What Would Google Do? by Jeff Jarvis
Like many people, I’m a big fan of Google and most of their products and when someone told me about this book I thought it would be interesting reading material both pleasure and business knowledge.
The title is catchy but I must warn you, this is not a business book. The book does not even provide insight into Google’s culture, management style or innovation process. On his blog, the author says the following about himself: “Jarvis was creator and founding editor of Entertainment Weekly; Sunday editor and associate publisher of the New York Daily News; TV critic for TV Guide and People; a columnist on the San Francisco Examiner; assistant city editor and reporter for the Chicago Tribune; reporter for Chicago Today” and as a consequence, the book reads much more like a long blog post than a structured book. Don’t get me wrong, Jarvis’ style is entertaining and the content of the book is interesting but you won’t find any major revelation that you can use to inject new ideas into your organization.
The most interesting part of the book is that Jarvis shows what other business models might look like if they were run by Google. These companies include airlines, real estate, banks, hospitals, insurance, and universities. Big comparing to real life example, the author demonstrates how internet companies like Craigslist, Flickr, Wikipedia, Amazon and Digg have disrupted their market by applying Google’s philosophy.
Overall, I enjoyed this book eventhough it turned out to be more for leisure than business.