Eric Schmidt, the former Google CEO and current executive chairman of Alphabet, recently sat down in an interview to discuss his experiences leading the company.
The full interview, which can be found on Medium, touched on Schmidt’s leadership and management practices as well as his definition of success. Here are highlights from that conversation.
On being CEO:
“My role was to manage the chaos. You need to have someone to run fast and have a good product sense,” he said. “That was Larry and Sergey. My job was to organize the world around them.”
On learning to manage better:
“As a young manager, the rule is that you absorb everything,” said Schmidt. “The next 5 years are when you’ll learn all the little things about leadership,” he added.
On advice to his younger self:
“Do things sooner and make fewer mistakes. The question is, what causes me not to make those decisions quickly. Some people are quicker than others, and it’s not clear which actually need to be answered quickly.Hindsight is always that you make the important decisions more quickly,” he explained.
“All success starts from doing one thing really well, but you’ll recruit better with a broader vision so you can sell the dream,” said Schmidt.