- Al Sharpton, Trayvon Martin’s parents rally against Fla. ‘stand your ground’ law
- Hillary Clinton campaign got illicit funds from D.C. scandal figure
- Obama administration backs off plan to cut prescription-drug program
- Tickets linked to stolen passports purchased by Iranian middleman
- More than 3,500 police planned for Boston Marathon
- Ottawa day care suspends 2-year-old for ‘outside’ cheese sandwich
- Liam Neeson tells NYC mayor to ‘man up’ in horse carriage fight
- Real-life Dr. Doolittle to reveal how to talk to animals
- Climate change could bring back smallpox, researchers say
- Shoe-bomb witness to speak from London at N.Y. trial
Google founder hopes to prove he’s ready to be CEO
Yet there is a fair amount of concern that Page’s other known traits _ his aloofness, rebellious streak and affinity for pursuing wacky ideas _ might lead the company astray. Page takes over as CEO on Monday as fast-rising rivals and tougher regulators threaten Google’s growth.
Investors used to Google Inc.’s consistency in exceeding financial targets worry that new leadership will bring more emphasis on long-term projects that take years to pay off. And many people still aren’t sure he has enough management skills to steer the Internet’s most powerful company.
Page already has learned that smarts alone won’t make him a great leader. Although Page impressed Google’s early investors with his ingenuity, they still insisted that he step down in 2001 as Google’s first CEO. He turned over the job to Eric Schmidt, a veteran executive who began working in Silicon Valley in the early 1980s while Page was still in grammar school.
Page’s admirers say that at 38, he is more mature and less apt to be chronically late to meetings or tune out of conversations that don’t stimulate his intellect _ habits that he fell into during his first stint as CEO.
“There are parts of being CEO that don’t fit Larry’s personality,” said Craig Silverstein, the first employee that Page and Google’s other founder, Sergey Brin, hired when they started the company in 1998. “You wear a lot of different hats when you’re CEO. Some of them are very interesting to Larry and some of them, presumably, are less interesting.”
True to his taciturn form, Page hasn’t said much publicly since Google made its stunning announcement in January that he will replace Schmidt as CEO. Google said Page wasn’t available for an interview.
Page, though, has left little doubt about his top priority: to dissolve the bureaucracy and complacency that accompanied the company’s rapid transformation into a 21st-century empire. Google is expected to end the year with more than 30,000 employees and $35 billion in annual revenue.
In Page’s mind, the 13-year-old company needs to return to thinking and acting like a feisty startup. Rising Internet stars such as Facebook, Twitter and Groupon, all less than 8 years old, are developing products that could challenge Google and make its dominance of Internet search less lucrative.
Page has drawn comparisons to two high-tech geniuses who are even more accomplished: Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates and Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs. Like those two pioneers in personal technology, Page invented and cultivated a product that changed the world.
Science and technology, though, seems to be in his DNA even though he grew up in Michigan, where automobiles rule.
His late father, Carl, was a computer scientist and pioneer in artificial intelligence, and his mother taught computer programming. Page began working on personal computers when he was just 6 years old in 1979, when home computers were a rarity. The geeky impulses carried into his adulthood, leading him to once build an inkjet printer out of Legos.
Page relishes challenging the status quo and encourages his employees to do so, too. Those who know Page suspect he picked up the anti-establishment mindset as a boy who attended Montessori schools, which discourage structured curricula and encourage independent activities.
TWT Video Picks
By David Keene
Conference showed that the values Reagan cherished still endure
- Hillary Clinton campaign received funds from Jeffrey Thompson
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Unanimous Senate passes bill on military sex assault to give victims more say in prosecution
- Senate Democrats, Republicans spar over restoring unemployment benefits
- Bill Clinton poses for photo with Bunny Ranch prostitutes
- Atheists sue to remove 'Ground Zero Cross' from 9/11 museum
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Sharyl Attkisson resigns from CBS after months of talks
- Mitch McConnell on beating tea party: 'We are going to crush them'
- DHS accused of holding U.S. citizen at airport, using emails to pry into her sex life
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again