Leaving Google

Friday, April 1 (no April fools!) is my last day at Google.

My mom reminded me recently that when I started coding at the age of 12, my dream was to one day work at Google. I still can’t believe that this German high school dropout somehow managed to turn that into a reality some 8 years ago, and it’s been everything I hoped for and more.

It might be a cliché, but at the actual moment of putting in my letter of resignation, so many powerful moments and achievements flashed before my eyes (yes yes, I’m not literally dead, but it’s still the closure of a big chapter of my life 😅 ).

Google scale truly is amazing: Saying “yes” to even a seemingly small-at-first collaborative project can turn into big wins for the web over time. Like that time when I thought Chrome DevTools should probably be more web design friendly (producing features like the Device Mode), or when I ran into Malte in an elevator and he told me about his new project AMP and how it might not be a bad idea to have a DevRel team for it (that really snowballed), when I discussed with Ilya and Alberto how it would be nice to hire a bunch of WordPress experts to support the web through the CMS ecosystem (that also snowballed), or when I chatted with my Marketing partner-in-crime Matt about how it’s weird that we have these big DevRel teams at Google supporting developers, but nothing equivalent for content creators (leading to the Google for Creators initiative).

Of course, none of this would have been as much fun without the teams around me: Along my Google journey, I met countless fascinating and goodhearted people (many of whom I now call my friends) and it’s working with them, and all the exhilarating moments we’ve lived through, that I’ll miss the most.

So, what’s next? That last chapter of my journey, Google for Creators, made me dive deep into the creator economy – a space that I’m fascinated and excited about, and where I’ll spend even more time going forward. On a day-to-day basis, I’ve realized that I’ve become too comfortable at Google – I’m ready for my next exhilarating challenge. To use the wise words of Yes Theory, I’m ready to seek discomfort.

Watch this space (or Twitter / LinkedIn / Instagram) for an upcoming announcement!

So long, and thanks for all the fish.

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  1. Dion Almaer said
    : Wow, a big one. Best of luck for what’s next. It was a pleasure working with you!
  2. Jeffrey Pearce said
    : All the best for the next chapter Paul, you've done some great stuff at Google! :)
  3. Paul Kinlan said
    : It's been great to work with you. I've learnt a lot from you over the years. Excited to see what you get up to next!
  4. Jeffrey Jose said
    : End of an era. Thanks for all the work, Paul! Good luck with what's next.
  5. Aurora Morales said
    : We're all going to meet you, but I'm so excited for you and your new gig. Hope our paths cross again 🙋🏻‍♀️🕊️
  6. Lance Willett said
    : Wishing you the best, Paul. Your work made the web a better place, and I hope that continues at your next gig.
  7. shreyasva said
    : Was a pleasure working with you. Good luck on your next adventure
  8. Kayce Basques said
    : Thank you for mentoring me and being a fun & supportive presence! Fond memory of going to that 10-course restaurant in Tokyo on a whim with you 😁
  9. Paul Bakaus said
    : It wasn’t hard mentoring you, you had a natural awesomeness with you! :)) 10-course menu was fun indeed!
  10. Chris said
    : Congrats on seeking the discomfort "never stay complacent" — 75 year-old skier on chairlift
  11. James Williams said
    : Best of luck. Is this where we share funny out of context memories like that time we had you eat a steak with chopsticks for a training course?
  12. Aifaz 💎 said
    : Not possible, we have to search important things most of the times, so we can’t leave Google, sorry if you but I can’t leave Google, it all about my bread and butter
  13. Kenji Baheux said
    : 😭 This AMP Conf Tokyo photo brings so much memories. I hope you will have a chance to come back again. Have fun at your next thing!
  14. Rahul Bansal said
    : It’s been great to collaborate with you. Feel sorry to see you go. Thanks for creating “Creators”. 🙏 All the best for next big thing 🎉
  15. Carole Olinger 🤘🇪🇺 said
    : Wow! That’s some news! I hope that doesn’t mean we won‘t see you around anymore? 😉 It was so great to chat with you 2 weeks ago! 🤗 Best of luck on your new journey! Completely understand! Remember, we us talking about pioneer-spirit? 😉 Excited to hear what’s next for you! 🍀💪
  16. tfeldhaus said
    : I've always enjoyed your passion and attitude, you've made a lot of impact - for the web ecosystem and for all the individual content creators. Most importantly, you inspired your team, colleagues and me. Wish you the very best! Hope our paths cross again!