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Guest Lecture - David Pablo Cohn

Justin Burr

Pablo works for Google labs which is used to reduce risk to systems that are created within Google. This is an experimental part of Google where new ideas are tested out to see how they work. The reason for Google labs is so that Google can cover themselves from having major criticisms made by people because it is showing the world that it is only a test and not the final project. This is a great idea because it lets you get your new ideas out there and see if they work without worrying about taking to many risks. Pablo talked a lot about the failures he has gone through to get to where he is now and told us that in order to do great things you must be able to learn from your failures. He has four rules that he follows to be successful the first one is to plan for failure. The best way to do this is to have a plan B, C, D and so on so that you have another option if you fail. The next rule is to fail quickly so that you can learn from your mistakes and continue on with your ideas. The third rule is to learn from your failures, if you don’t learn from them then they are complete failures. The last rule is to Iterate think of what you struggled on before and fix it, think about ways to cope if you are wrong. These rules are something that I will look back on throughout my career because they fit almost every situation.

Three questions I didn't ask:

  1. What is your favorite part about working for Google?
  2. If you were given the chance would you leave Google to pursue your own business idea?
  3. Is there anyone that you know that has not failed at all? If so what was their strategy that worked?

Three places I would take the talk:

  1. I would like to have known a little more about Google and what you exactly do there.
  2. Explain the best methods that you have used when you failed to help pick you back up.
  3. I would like to hear about your other ideas that have failed very badly and how long you spent working on them.