What Detroit Can Learn From Google
Carmakers need to let go of their musty business models and start thinking like 21st century companies—like Google.
Google listens to us and trusts us when it releases unfinished products as "betas" so we can tell them what to do next. That's the approach behind Google News, Gmail, and the new Chrome browser. The company also lets us tailor searches so we turn up only images or book excerpts. And Google pays attention to us by using our clicks and links to determine rank in search results. The more people who connect to a blog post on the best recipe for lamb tagine, the more prominent Google will make that Web site when people hunt for dinner ideas.
Google wants us involved in the creative process; Detroit doesn't. Richard Florida, author of Who's Your City?, said Detroit's car companies were "destroyed" by "a management mind set that said, 'We know it all, we don't need anyone other's ideas, and we can do anything we want with our companies.' "
~Jeff Jarvis in Business Week
Related: "What Detroit Can Learn from Bangalore," from Reason Magazine, June 2006