36 Google vice presidents left the company since last year: Report
Google chief executive Sundar Pichai reportedly faces a fresh management challenge as a portion of his senior leadership grows restive.
According to the New York Times, current and former senior leaders have criticized the firm's increasingly "risk-averse" style, with more than 30 of the company's vice presidents quitting in a single year.
The Times, citing 15 current and former execs, reports this layer of leadership believes the firm has become too bureaucratic, and that Pichai plays it too safe.
"Google's lack of courage with its diversity problem is ultimately what evaporated my passion for the job," David Baker, a former director of engineering who worked at the company for 16 years, told the Times. "The more secure Google has become financially, the more risk averse it has become."
Sundar Pichai took the reins as CEO in 2015, taking over from company cofounder Larry Page.
In that time, some of the company's dirty laundry has aired publicly including: The disputed firing of its ethical AI lead Timnit Gebru, antitrust investigations in the US and the EU, and internal conflict over its military contracts with the Pentagon.
After more than 2,000 employees signed a petition rebuking Gebru's firing, Pichai promised to restore trust within the company. His message has been somewhat undermined by an increasingly outspoken and newly organized workforce.
In an analysis of LinkedIn profile updates, the Times found that 36 of the company's VPs had quit in the last 12 months, accounting for almost a tenth of such executives currently in post at the company.
In 2018, the paper also reports that more than a dozen VPs signed an email addressed to Pichai, claiming that the company was experiencing "significant growing pains," and warning that there were "problems coordinating technical decisions" and that their own feedback was "often disregarded."