Friday, December 30, 2005

Internet_the difference

People always say companies in different countries have different cultures. I didn't agree at the first time: with the fast developing of Internet, the earth seems now to be a global village, then how come the difference?

But now I agree after seeing the difference between two companies who do same business. The two are Google.com and Baidu.com(claimed to be China's google)

Google's founders-Sergey Brin and Larry Page- were awarded the title "Men of the Year" by Financial Times (FT)

Baidu's founder Li Yanhong was awarded "Men of the year" by CCTV, the largest TV station in China.

Looks the same, right? But no.

Baidu put the news on its frontpage(attention, the front searching engine page), and opened a special column to praise its boss.

Google didn't say anything on its "corporate news" section(though it could do that), not even to say the frontpage.

In the corporate culture, Chinese companies always put the leaders in the highest postion, so there are many examples on how companies go bankrupted without their founders. But the good operations are depending on the structure and regulations, not on personals.

Here, I saw the difference.

2 comments:

Lutz_W said...

To me as a Gweilo it really appears that "follow-and-praise-leader" is a typical thing in chinese corporate culture. But by picking out Larry Page and Sergey Brin, you really chose two guys who are especially renowned for being quite shy of media publicity -- even for western standards.
To me the biggest difference in Google and Baidu is on the product/sales level: Google pumps out new stuff virtually every week, and they are offering quite good APIs for their stuff. And while they sometimes snap back at their investors, they are quite open with their figures. I don't see this happening at Baidu--here I only see rumors about fraught and severly bloated clickthrough-rates, and Baidu seems to be unwilling to do something about it.

I couldn't agree more when you say that good companies don't revolve around media-whore CEOs. Jim Collins wrote exactly about this issue in his book "Good to Great" (my entrepreneurism bible). He proofs statistically that most companies with self-appraising leaders significantly go down the drain once those leaders are gone, cause everything was just about their person... (so much about Steve Jobs, LOL)

:) <- Lutz

Amy or koala said...

hoho, thanks, Lutz. Yeah, CEO's strong personality may always affect the company. It must be hard, though necessary, for the company to continute with that after the CEO is gone.

Baidu is a typical example of Chinese start-up companies. Heroism is always the content of the favorite stories, though it is just kind of fashion.