"Google Destroyed My Best Job/Career I Ever Had"

Until we received an email from an unhappy DoubleClick client yesterday, we had no idea so many Google (GOOG) employees had become dissatisfied since the 2008 merger.But as soon as the letter went up — it called the atmosphere at DoubleClick “bleak” and “woeful” — the comments came pouring in.

One former employee wrote us: “Google destroyed my best job/career I ever had.”

Another said, “Aside from a few remaining product managers, I don’t know anyone still there from the DoubleClick acquisition who really likes it.”

Read more from angry Googlers →

In retrospect, we all should have seen this coming.

Google has a fairly spotty track record when it comes to acquisitions.

All that happened after Google bought Feedburner, Dodgeball, and Blogger was that those startups’ founders quit to start and work at new hot startups such as Twitter and Foursquare.

Here’s the good news: the people who built DoubleClick built a company that sold for $3.1 billion. If Google is pushing those people back onto the street, we’re going to see a flowering of startups in the online advertising space.

We’re starting to see early signs of this already in startups like real-time ad optimizer AppNexus, run by Michael Rubenstein — the director of sales for the original DoubleClick ad exchange — and founded by Brian O’Kelley and Mike Nolet, the tech team behind Yahoo acquisition Right Media.

Read more from angry Googlers (and some defenders) →

[slideshow]
[slide
permalink=”google-destroyed-my-best-jobcareer-i-ever-had-1″
title=””Google destroyed my best job/career I ever had.””
content=”‘Nobody left behind is happy.

Google destroyed my best job/career I ever had. Google can keep all the food, perks and BS, long live DoubleClick and the culture we had!'”
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[slide
permalink=”i-left-after-waiting-for-even-a-semblance-of-a-product-roadmap-2″
title=””I left after waiting for even a semblance of a product roadmap””
content=”‘Aside from a few remaining product managers, I don’t know anyone still there from the DoubleClick acquisition who really likes it.

I left after waiting for even a semblance of a product roadmap for almost seven months. To me it’s apparent Google only bought DCLK to keep Microsoft from getting it. That said, it’s opened up a ton of opportunity for companies playing in the display ad technology space, so I can’t complain. But whatever aura of invincibility Google had before I joined it went kaput when I saw how stocked it was with people who were long on academic achievement and short on real-world achievement. Academia is the last place to learn how to integrate a people business, for crying out loud.'”
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[slide
permalink=”google-took-the-handful-of-smart-dclk-folks-and-integrated-them-where-they-could-3″
title=””Google took the handful of smart DCLK folks and integrated them where they could””
content=”‘As an Ex-DCLK/Google guy, I can say this about all the above ex-DCLKers… with very, very few exceptions were any of you given lateral positions or promotions – in some cases, it happened during an appeasement period, but rectified shortly thereafter.

So, having a bunch of you talk about moving on as quickly as you could is a bit disingenuous, don’t you think? That has nothing to do with product or integration – it’s that your days were numbered and everybody, including you, knew it.

However, there is learning here and an illustration of a pattern by Google. Pre-DCLK, Google thought they could build DFP and DFA, they tried and realised agencies and publishers were not willing to cede that additional power to Google, having already done so with content monetization and search. So, Google was forced to accept the ‘buy-it’ route. Not sure if you heard, but Google doesn’t like to be forced into anything.

The point is, Google took the handful of smart DCLK folks and integrated them where they could, but realised very quickly that DCLK had had a decade of talent drain and that most, not all, but most of the talented folks had been replaced by mid-level operators who were not lighting the tech or sales world on fire… that doesn’t work at Google and it caused a fair amount of problems, particularly in NY – see Cafeteria (imagine: Caddyshack pool scene?).

Other than David Rosenblatt – who is very smart – there were a tiny bunch of people that fit into Google’s hiring calibre – in this case, it mostly wasn’t about the calibre, but more about the difference in outlook of the people; DCLK had come off of 10 years of downsizing, penny pinching and uncertainty; contrarily, Google kids were all fresh out of the tops of their college and believed they could re-invent the world – not a good match.

So, that is where Google has the problem with integration – even when they ‘buy it’, they still think they can ‘build it’ and they rarely have any respect for the incoming ‘talent’. For every good example – like Keyhole integrating to Google Earth/Maps or Urchin integrating to Analytics – there are dozens of dMarc, Dodgeballs and DoubleClick’s where the Google talent doesn’t respect the acquisition’s people…'”
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[slide
permalink=”theyve-absolutely-blown-up-service-and-support-4″
title=””They’ve absolutely blown up service and support.””
content=”‘The first thing Sergey said to us in that rambling speech in Central Park was ‘we’re only serious about search.’ And that hasn’t changed.

They’ve absolutely blown up service and support. Sure, they’ve maintained a halfway decent support structure for the very largest customers, but that’s only because they’re not TOTAL idiots.

Google called DCLK a fat organisation and pledged to get rid of 60% of the company either by forced or voluntary attrition in a year’s time.

What’s left is a strategy that has been poorly articulated to the public, a million competitors getting a second wind, and a sense that the promise of what DoubleClick could have offered with a genuine media partner is never going to happen.'”
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[slide
permalink=”90-of-the-folks-i-worked-with-myself-included-got-out-as-fast-as-we-could-5″
title=””90% of the folks I worked with (myself included) got out as fast as we could””
content=”‘To me it’s apparent Google only bought DCLK to keep Microsoft from getting it.

90% of the folks I worked with (myself included) got out as fast as we could, even without Google giving us the boot (and they did that too). I also agree with the ‘My vote is for the 3/4 combo…Do no evil… ‘ A lot of us were laughing at the Do no evil — as they seemed hell bent on destroying what they bought……'”
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[slide
permalink=”now-all-you-see-is-kids-running-around-in-scooters-6″
title=””Now all you see is kids running around in scooters””
content=”‘I spent almost a decade at DCLK, survived the buy out, and just recently left GOOG.

I’ve seen it all from the inside and couldn’t have written the article better myself.

GOOG ruined a great company, specially their customer service. I left embarrassed of the people I had to work with. It used to be a great company with great people. Now all you see is kids running around in scooters with no street or advertising industry smarts or experience whatsoever, Google kool-aid drunk. They take 2 hour lunches and leave at 5 on the clock.

Whether they move forward or not with the products is a different story. But any company that *really* tightens up their customer service and shows it, is going to give DART a run for its money.

And I mean a real one, of the ‘Houston, we have a problem’ kind.'”
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[slide
permalink=”the-reports-of-our-death-have-been-greatly-exaggerated-7″
title=””The reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated””
content=”‘Hogwash and poppycock. Employees being unhappy after they were bought is a very different thing than saying all the roadmaps are bleak or that the majority of our customers have a foot out the door. The level of engineering investment is higher than ever and customer sat is rising too. Europe has always been harder for us, but we’re making progress there as well.

We flip OpenX customers to GAM and DFP all the time, and serious pubs wouldn’t have been on it in the first place unless they owned part of the business.

In other words, the reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated. Google is fully invested and interested in seeing DoubleClick succeed.'”
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[slide
permalink=”its-just-going-to-become-a-very-different-organization-8″
title=””It’s just going to become a very different organisation.””
content=”‘No one that I know of in Services takes 2 hour lunches and leave at 5 on the dot. I see new people trying to do their best at a difficult job. Are they young and, sometimes, callow? Sure.

Are they struggling to relearn the products after Google hastily and foolishly let most people who really understood DFA and DFP go?

Has that translated to a dip in service? Absolutely. But I don’t blame the services folks who are putting their hearts and souls into trying to do those jobs well. The problem is that they are in an organisation that doesn’t believe in Services and Customer Support. Period. Google thinks all problems can be solved by Engineering and there is a sense among the services org that Google is chomping at the bit to get rid of most of them as soon as they can. First on the list are the old DCLK’ers who don’t fit into the Google mould. But no one in services, new or old, feels like their job is meaningful to the company. I’m sure clients can tell and that’s probably what is leading to any malaise they are feeling. However, I am also sure there are clients who will tell you that DCLK is servicing their accounts just fine and they aren’t going anywhere.

As for the roadmaps…I’m surprised that anyone would call them bleak. They are more innovative than any DCLK roadmaps that I’ve seen at my time here. DoubleClick products are benefitting from Google’s engineering focus and are making strides unheard of in DCLK’s ‘golden age’.

I think it’s wishful thinking to assume that DoubleClick is dying under Google. It’s not…it’s just going to become a very different organisation.'”
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[slide
permalink=”sounds-great-how-do-i-get-a-job-at-google-9″
title=”Sounds great! How do I get a job at Google?”
content=”15 Google Interview Questions That Will Make You Feel Stupid
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[slide
permalink=”we-gave-googles-doubleclick-merger-an-a-heres-how-we-graded-its-other-buys-10″
title=”We gave Google’s DoubleClick merger an “A.” Here’s how we graded its other buys:”
content=”Grading Google’s Acquisitions
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[/slideshow]

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