Here are some ideas shared by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos:
Jeff’s live overview.
Bezos said the smartest individuals, the people who most often got things right, were most often wrong.
Jeff’s five habits: 1. Listen to what customers value and seek their feedback on their experiences. 2. Think objectively to make sound, fact-based decisions. 3. Empower employees with the resources they need to please customers. 4. Create new value for customers, without being asked. 5. Delight customers by exceeding their expectations.
“My job is to encourage people to be bold… If you’re going to take bold bets, there’s going to be experiments.”
Sleep habits: ‘I just feel so much better all day long if I’ve had eight hours. Avoid early-morning meetings. Short naps have shown to be beneficial to sleep-deprived workers. Investigate meditation…”
12 books everyone should read:
- ‘The Remains of the Day‘ by Kazuo Ishiguro,
- ‘Sam Walton: Made in America‘ by Sam Walton,
- ‘Memos from the Chairman‘ by Alan Greenberg,
- ‘The Mythical Man-Month‘ by Frederick P. Brooks, Jr.,
- ‘Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies‘ by Jim Collins
- ‘Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t‘ by Jim Collins,
- ‘Creation: Life and How to Make It‘ by Steve Grand
- ‘The Innovator’s Dilemma‘ by Clayton Christensen,
- ‘The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement‘ by Eliyahu Goldratt,
- ‘Lean Thinking: Banish Waste and Create Wealth in Your Corporation‘ by James Womack and Daniel Jones,
- ‘Data-Driven Marketing: The 15 Metrics Everyone in Marketing Should Know‘ by Mark Jeffery,
- ‘The Black Swan‘ by Nassim Taleb.
“A dreamy business offering has at least four characteristics. Customers love it, it can grow to very large size, it has strong returns on capital, and it’s durable in time — with the potential to endure for decades.”
12 lessons: ONE. Be Stubborn and Flexible. TWO. Stick with Two Pizzas. THREE. Never Stop Experimenting. FOUR. Be Willing to Invent. FIVE. Think Long Term. SIX. Tie Experimentation, Willingness to Invent, and Innovation All Together. SEVEN. Present and Discuss Memoranda, not Slide Shows. EIGHT. Obsess About Customers. NINE. Base Your Strategy on Things That Won’t Change. TEN. Identify and Remove Risk. ELEVEN. Get Started Now to Avoid Regret Later.
TWELVE. Advice for entrepreneurs: 1) “Never chase the hot thing….you need to position yourself and wait for the wave. And the way you do that is you pick something you’re passionate about. That’s the number one piece of advice that I’d give to someone that wants to start a company or start a new endeavor inside of a bigger company. Make sure it’s something you’re interested in, something you’re passionate about. Missionaries build better products…I’d take a missionary over a mercenary any day. Mercenaries want to flip the company and get rich, missionaries want to build a great product or service – and one of those paradoxes is usually the missionaries end up making more money anyway…..pick something you’re passionate about.” 2) “Start with the customer and work backward. Those two things, passion and customer-centricity, will take you an awful long way.”
In a meeting, an executive will present a 6-page memo. 30 minutes will be spent reading it. 30 minutes will be spent discussing it.
Amazon’s 14 Leadership Principles: ONE – Customer Obsession. TWO – Ownership. THREE -Invent and Simplify. FOUR – Are Right, A Lot. FIVE – Learn and Be Curious. SIX – Hire and Develop the Best. SEVEN – Insist on the Highest Standards. EIGHT – Think Big, NINE – Bias for Action. TEN – Frugality. ELEVEN – Earn Trust. TWELVE – Dive Deep. THIRTEEN – Have Backbone; Disagree and Commit. FOURTEEN – Deliver Results.
A Type 1 decision represents a door you walk through and can’t go back, such as quitting a well-paying job to focus on your side-hustle full time. A Type 2 decision represents a reversible choice by an individual or smaller groups, for example, testing a new product with a group of beta customers or the layout of a section on the Amazon store.
You don’t have a traffic problem, you have a conversion problem!
Consider three questions before offering someone a job: 1) “Will you admire this person?” 2) “Will this person raise the average level of effectiveness of the group they’re entering?” 3)“Along what dimension might this person be a superstar?”
Eating octopus for breakfast is symbolic of his business strategy.
How does that “constant friction” lead to massive success?: 1. You don’t rely on someone to look out for you. 2. You only hire people who are better than you. 3. You learn to back up your story. 4. You ask “Why?” five times. 5. You get frugal. 6. You make your decisions with data.
Two-pizza teams: 1. What’s the magic number? 2. Follow the “Cheers” rule of effective teams. 3. Make teamwork easier through transparency.
Be ready to answer other difficult questions: “How would you solve problems if you were from Mars?” to “You are Amazon, and Samsung offers you 10,000 Samsung Galaxy S3s at a 34% discount. Is that a good deal?”
Amazon has four core competencies: ONE. Customer Centricity. TWO. Continuous Optimization. THREE. Culture of Innovation. FOUR. Corporate Agility.
“I very frequently get the question: ‘What’s going to change in the next 10 years?‘ And that is a very interesting question; it’s a very common one. I almost never get the question: ‘What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?‘ And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two — because you can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time. … [I]n our retail business, we know that customers want low prices, and I know that’s going to be true 10 years from now. They want fast delivery; they want vast selection. It’s impossible to imagine a future 10 years from now where a customer comes up and says, ‘Jeff I love Amazon; I just wish the prices were a little higher,’ [or] ‘I love Amazon; I just wish you’d deliver a little more slowly.’ Impossible. And so the effort we put into those things, spinning those things up, we know the energy we put into it today will still be paying off dividends for our customers 10 years from now. When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.”