Despite Exec Reorg, Google Social Plan Still Hazy

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google_recruiting_small.jpgADOTAS – We now have confirmation that former and current Google CEO Larry Page’s decentralized Google gambit is the real deal. The exit of Senior Vice President of Product Development Jonathan Rosenberg signaled Page’s desire to scrape out all that middle management that was supposedly gumming up the speed of Google innovation.

Seemingly, Page is trying to not only copy the success of Google’s autonomous Android unit, but also give himself Steve-Jobs-esque control over the Google empire. Yesterday he made numerous promotions to form an All-Star Team of SVPs that report to Page:

  • Andy Rubin, senior vice president of mobile;
  • Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Chrome;
  • Salar Kamangar, senior vice president of YouTube and video;
  • Alan Eustace, senior vice president of search;
  • Susan Wojcicki, senior vice president of ads; and
  • Vic Gundotra, senior vice president of social.

Social? So Google isn’t tossing in the towel? Not in the least bit. In fact, Business Insider got an internal email from Page that says 25% of all Google employees’ annual bonuses — not just those in the social department — will depend on the performance of its social products. All employees have been asked to test these products and encourage their friends and family to do the same.

The real question is, what the hell are these social products? Or what will they be? Sure there’s the rumored Google Me social network and +1, Google’s version of a Facebook Like. But notice there isn’t a head of email — we’re guessing that’s now a social prerogative, which makes us recall the whole Buzz fiasco. Mashable also notes that tech media love interest Marissa Mayer, vice president of location and local services, didn’t get her own division — where do those initiatives fall under?

The whole decentralized structure seems a little puzzling because many of the divisions seem interconnected — for a while, it seemed social efforts would be the glue that pulled them together. It still could be, but despite all the executive shifting, we still have no idea what Google’s social plan is.

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