You deserve a Google bus commute!
Bringing my startup to Mountain View and former Google co-workers
July/August 2010 — start at Google
Re-watching all 121 episodes of Lost. That’s how I passed the 2.5–3 hours spent daily on the Google bus for the first 2 months. That was how I kept busy commuting to work in Mountain View in the summer of 2010.
I had just moved to the Bay Area in 2010 after spending four years in Washington DC. In DC, we almost never left downtown except to take the Orange Line to the IHOP in Ballston. A 90-minute commute each way was a shock to the system — even if it was “the best possible way to commute ~15 hours per week.”
There was no place in the world like the Googleplex. Working in Mountain View was an incredible opportunity. And for thousands of Googlers — and 1+ million Bay Area commuters — the commute comes with the job.
January 2015 — leave Google to start Scoop
After 4.5 great years at Google, I sent a typical farewell email to my co-workers and friends, and I left. To go where? To start a not-yet-named carpool startup. It was the scariest professional decision I’ve ever made. It didn’t help that I was embarrassed to even tell people what I was working on.
“We’re finally going to get people to carpool to work.”
It didn’t exactly wow people.
August 2016 — Scoop comes to Mountain View
On Monday, my Google + Scoop story comes full circle: Scoop launches in Mountain View. Anyone who commutes to Mountain View — by Google bus or solo car — will be able to use Scoop to carpool to work.
In the last 18 months, the Scoop team has built a community of more than 30,000 commuters across the Bay Area. We operate the largest peer-to-peer carpool network in the United States. And scratching the surface of the number of cars we can take off the road.
Just last week, we surpassed 1 million miles saved — that means we’ve turned 1 million miles of solo driving into efficient carpooling. I couldn’t be prouder of our team.
Now, we’ll be working our hardest to reduce congestion in the Mountain View community. Just like we have in Palo Alto, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, San Jose, San Francisco and Pleasanton.
The little rewards for an entrepreneur
As an entrepreneur, you accept that the new baseline for daily life is chaos. There are big wins and huge losses, and milestones are naturally pegged to numeric accomplishments.
For me, bringing Scoop to Mountain View is one of those rare, more special moments you get in a startup journey. I have nothing but the fondest memories of being at Google. That’s where I learned everything I know about building great company culture, products and technology.
And I remember how the comfort of the Google bus made (nearly) every hour I commuted feel worth it. Worth it because Google was a job I loved. But I don’t think I could have felt that way driving alone. How many Bay Area commuters question their jobs as they drive to work alone in traffic?
Scoop is all about giving life back to commuters. Less time in traffic, less stress, less cost. Carpools with Scoop save time, money, and the environment. And any Scoop carpooler would tell you that not sitting in the car alone and frustrated is the biggest win of all.
If carpooling with Scoop to Mountain View helps people stay excited to go to work — despite their commute — then that’s about all I could have hoped for when I left Google.
Happy commuting, Mountain View.
Jon Sadow is the Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer at Scoop, the fully-automated carpooling solution for your daily commute. Prior to founding Scoop, Jon spent 5 years at Google in both Product Management and Business Development. Jon is a graduate of the George Washington University in Washington DC, and now lives in San Francisco with his wife, Michelle, and their dog — and Scoop mascot — Kugel.