On joining Google

My first Google shirt from a meeting in 1999.

It was 1999 when this loop started. Cyclades had helped the first generation of Internet companies (notably, Yahoo!) to figure out how to manage large Internet data centers and Google called us as they prepared to build some very large ones. It quickly became our largest customer (Cyclades was acquired by Avocent in 2006).

As I left Avocent in 2009, I took some time to reflect on what I had learned with the Open Source Software Community and working in a 3000-employee organization with 7-8 layers of management. I was convinced that a new generation of collaboration-oriented enterprises would redefine the concept of large company in the 21st century.

At the time, I collaborated with John Lima and we wrote about the concept of “Click-Company“, a customer-focused enterprise that had fully embraced digital media that was less hierarchical and more collaborative. Our thoughts derived substantially from the ideas of Marshall McLuhan who, as early as the 1970’s, had anticipated the emergence of digital media and predicted its effects in society and the economy.

Google had grown and was the real-world example of a Click-Company. I applied for a job in product management there in 2012. Joining Google did not materialize, so I spent the next few years involved with a diverse range of projects and roles in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. In 2016, was back in a corporate project at Opengear and helped to develop a technology and product roadmap centered on NetOps automation. Opengear was acquired in Dec. 2019 by Digi International.

Earlier this year, Google contacted me and we started a conversation that culminated with an opportunity for me to join the gTech technical platform group. gTech mediates the interaction of Google products with consumers, customers, and partners. My start date is set for Jul 20th, 2020. I feel honored for joining a company I have admired and been following since its inception.

Joining Google closes a loop in my career and opens new ones. I hope to bring people and ideas together, because that is what moves us forward. I will apply all I have learned in the past and want to contribute to a better Google and a better world.

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