FEBRUARY 2020 / NO. 1

What can we learn from Amazon?

“I have always worried as a company at scale your biggest competition is from within, that you stop executing well, you focus on the wrong things, you get distracted”
Sundar Pichai, CEO of both Google and Alphabet
In the 1990s former CEO of GE Jack Welch quoted similar as the new CEO of Google and Alphabet: “We have met the enemy and he is us”. In 2013 former CEO John Chambers of Cisco quoted: “We understand the market, our competitors and most importantly how our competitors think. I have a pretty good idea what their next moves will be. When you compete against us, you will lose”. Two quotes of business leaders who made GE and Cisco great. Interesting to see how Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, looks at competition from within.
“There are decisions that can be made by analysis. These are the best kind of decisions. They are fact-based decisions!”
What can we learn from the leadership of Jeff Bezos of Amazon? We like to mention some:
  1. Open seat in the boardroom: this is the seat of the customer and he/she is the most important person in the room. The secret of Amazon and the key of success is the relentless focus on the customer
  2. S-team is the team of senior employees from across the different divisions who Jeff Bezos trusts most
  3. Pizza-team: two pizzas must be sufficient food for the whole team. With such small teams you have sufficient views/opinions to take decisions and to accellerate
  4. Six-pager is the story of six pages maximum to present proposals convincingly
  5. Relentless is the favorite word of Jeff Bezos. If you click on ‘relentless.com’ you get to …………… Amazon
In our INTEL OF MID JANUARY we introduced a new way of competing: ‘Collision’, meaning the competition between AI-driven and traditional firms across many sectors of industry. We are always challenged in our strategic intelligence best practices. In our International Master Class we share all of it with the attendees.
“Managers who are skilled at executing clearly defined strategies are ill equipped for out-of-the-box creative thinking and can be seen as lame ducks stucked within their comfort zones”

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