AOL just hired another former Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) executive. It's a much bigger deal for AOL than it is for Google.

Skeptics talk about a "Google brain drain," as if a few migrant executives would topple the entire company. That supposed drain has been going on for years, and is showing no signs of letting up. Ex-Googlers have gone on to fresh startups like Twitter and Facebook, to senior posts at promising businesses like VMware (NYSE:VMW), and into venture capitalism.

And yes, several former Googlers have moved to Time Warner's (NYSE:TWX) AOL. Today's ex-Googler, Web search specialist Shashj Seth, becomes AOL's chief of online advertising operations, where he reports to former Googler Jeff Levick. And Levick's boss is AOL CEO Tim Armstrong, who moved in from -- yep, Google.

If AOL set out to build a microcosm of Google before going public, then the company is doing a great job. These are proven engineers, leaders, and entrepreneurs with solid e-business experience from their years at Google and elsewhere. When Time Warner kicks this birdie out of the nest, I expect AOL to find its wings quickly. AOL may never relive the glory years of the 1990s when "You've got mail" was a daily routine for millions of early Internet users, but it could at least re-establish itself as a legitimate rival to Yahoo! (NASDAQ:YHOO), IAC/InterActive (NASDAQ:IACI), and Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) online division. Call me when AOL finally goes public on its own again.

In the meantime, personnel moves are nothing new in Silicon Valley. Google snatched many of its key employees from competitors like Microsoft. CEO Eric Schmidt came in from Novell (NASDAQ:NOVL). At AOL, Mr. Seth will work alongside Brad Garlinghouse -- the man behind Yahoo's famed peanut butter manifesto. Google will steal a few big names in the next couple of years -- and lose a bunch. And that's okay.

Even if Google starts losing some truly high-profile names, like search maven Marissa Mayer or technology evangelist Vint Cerf, the show must and willgo on. As long as the triumvirate of Eric, Larry, and Sergei stays intact at the top, Google's pulse will stay strong. Even those guys might be replaceable in a pinch. Google has a unique corporate culture in which the vision comes from the top and execution lives in the day-to-day trenches.

Google has a lot of growing left to do, even while it's shedding a few big names along the way. That's why I'm in for the long haul.

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Fool contributor Anders Bylund owns shares in Google, but he holds no other position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings and a concise bio if you like, and The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.