Google X Boss's Key To Success: Light Fires And Land On The Moon

Columbia space shuttle

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Google X is the search giant’s playground for engineers working on the company’s next-generation projects.Two common examples of the things coming out of Google X are Google Glass and driverless cars.

Recently, the head of the closed-door organisation, Astro Teller, penned an article for Wired sharing some of his keys to success.

“It’s often easier to make something 10 times better than it is to make it 10 per cent better,” Teller starts off his piece.

Basically, Teller argues that when you think about accomplishing goals that seem impossible, you’re much more likely to achieve them. He uses the example of John F. Kennedy sending a man to the moon:

You’ve all heard the story before: Without a clear path to success when we started, we accomplished in less than a decade a dream several generations in the making. We chose to go to the moon, John F. Kennedy said, not because it was easy … but because it was hard. Suddenly everyone from schoolchildren to the largest institutions were rallying behind the mission.

This ideal is from a concept called “moonshot thinking.” Moonshot thinking is the idea that if you’re not thinking crazy enough then you’re doing the wrong thing.

But Teller clarifies that not all moonshot thinking starts with picking a big problem and it doesn’t all involve technology. Teller’s point is that if we change our thinking and focus on moonshot thinking we may end up solving the right problems instead of the wrong ones.

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