I was sad to read this AllThingsd story that came out yesterday about Google co-founder Sergey Brin.  Everyone loses in these things.   The couple themselves.  Coworkers.   And, oh yeah, the children.

The collateral damage was felt as far as Google’s Android division, where product manager Hugo Barra has left the company.  This has led to a lot of speculation about Barra, his effectiveness as a manager and the Android division as a whole.

Is Android being deemphasized at Google?  (Yes.)   Is Chrome the new darling?  (yes).   And if Barra was ineffective, how did he rise so high in the Google Organization?

For that latter question, I have no idea, but I did read this entertaining HR take on it by Kamaal.

>>I have to wonder what the hell is going on at Google [if Barra was such an ineffective product manager].

The same thing that goes on in nearly any big company?

Its not like these people are Steve Jobs like product managers giving everything they have to the product/project. Most of the time there is some UI designer which does all the design work and these people just come in as some kind of reviewers to give some general improvement comments.

Apart from that its just usual decision making, book keeping, employee appraisal management and your general bureaucracy work is what they do 99.99% of the times. Add your usual corporate politics to keep their position in the hierarchy maintained.

Thankfully for them Apple showed/shows them much of the UI direction. So they don't to really work on any paradigm changing innovation. If they can get out some thing similar looking, without big obvious mistakes they can simply come in and push their 9-5 jobs maintaining the status quo without any real problem.

He most likely moved on as he did not find it possible to climb the corporate ladder any further at Google as the current set of execs are well entrenched into their jobs and may not quit until they naturally retire.

Tags: Google, Android, News, Apple, Steve Jobs, Chrome, AllThingsd, Sergey Brin, Hugo Barra, Kamaal, UI designer