InfoWorld: Fast-forwarding to now, in your new position as head of Google's enterprise cloud, what are some of the challenges and inhibitors you face? Do you think we're reaching a tipping point with the public cloud?
Greene: The biggest change that's getting everybody to move is, all of a sudden: "Wait a minute, I can't secure my data center. Google Cloud is actually more secure than my data center ..." We have 600 security engineers. They can't keep up with that no matter how big a company they are.
And do I really want to keep developing ways to manage containers or virtual machines and manage all that when I could hand that off? I want to be able to keep taking advantage of the latest way to get insights into my data and the ways to automate streaming my data in and managing it. Do I really want to personally do that with my own people?
A company's core advantage is in the applications it builds. They were having to build the whole thing so that they could move fast and take advantage of new technology, but now there's a way to take advantage of new technology and move fast while partnering with Google Cloud. But it is a partnership. That's one thing I've realized. You can't say to someone: "OK, you're moving to the cloud now. Here's a bunch of APIs. Good luck." It's a lifelong partnership.
InfoWorld: That's a very good point. It seems to me there's a bit of a cultural disconnect between Google and that sort of relationship with enterprise. Google is seen in some ways as its own insular world. You can come and use our stuff if you like, but ...
Greene: [laughs] We'll do you that favor.
InfoWorld: Yeah. The whole relationship thing is so essential on the enterprise side. You established that with VMware. How does that translate?
Greene: VMware hired very good engineers; Google hires very good engineers. Our engineers [at VMware] loved really blowing the socks off our customers, really delivering value to them. We loved it that our customers loved us. It was really a lot of fun.
Here at Google, everybody is getting excited about it. Before we did a public cloud, the customers were Googlers, because they run 7 billion-plus active user apps. That's who the company wanted to make happy. Now we have this opportunity to make the whole world happy, so it's not hard to bring that to an engineering org, because at the end of the day, everybody wants to add value to the world.
Suddenly, we can reach every enterprise with the technology. Our technologies are going to go further and have more impact. Then, building out our go-to-market org to have all the functions that we need to properly support our customers ... that's what I've been working really hard on.
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