Case | HBS Case Collection | September 2008 (Revised July 2011)

Keeping Google 'Googley'

by Boris Groysberg, David A. Thomas and Alison Berkley Wagonfeld

Abstract

This case, set in 2008, examines how Google has worked to avoid potential negative byproducts of rapid growth such as bureaucracy, slow decision-making, lack of visibility, and organizational inconsistency. When the case protagonist, Kim Scott, started with Google in 2004, she wondered if she would still be there in several years as she liked small, entrepreneurial companies. In 2008, she was pleased that Google still had the same entrepreneurial energy that it had when she joined. She and her colleagues reflect on how Google has been able to maintain its culture as the company keeps doubling in size.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship; Growth and Development Strategy; Organizational Culture; Internet; Information Technology Industry;

Citation:

Groysberg, Boris, David A. Thomas, and Alison Berkley Wagonfeld. "Keeping Google 'Googley'." Harvard Business School Case 409-039, September 2008. (Revised July 2011.)