Jeff Bezos named Fortune’s businessperson of the year.
Quiet time / 6 page memo readings: at the start of meetings
High praise from someone whose lunch you’re eating:
Jeff is a manic competitor, a delightful human being and a trusted supplier.
From Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. Good tombstone summary as a product leader.
Customer centric culture & product strategy: Rapidly iterating on market feedback even real-time in meetings.
Even in Dicken’s day, he would take notice of the criticism of the prior installments and use it to his advantage…We innovate by starting with the customer and working backwards. When (competitors) are in the shower in the morning, they’re thinking about how they’re going to get ahead of one of their top competitors. Here in the shower, we’re thinking about how we are going to invent something on behalf of a customer.
Cost cutting in operations: salaries and perks are lower relative to expectations set by the Silicon Valley smart set. Second highest salary is $165K, Bezos himself getting $82K (of course $19 billion in founder’s shares makes that bearable). Carrots are in restricted stock rather than incentive pay and being part of a team building Big Things.
vs. Steve Jobs: Similarities drawn on competitiveness, changing the subject / reality distortion, disdain for Wall Street and rules like tax laws, intolerance for incompetence. Differs obviously in product strategy – “Your margin is my opportunity.”
Sci-Fi Fan: because of course he is. Wonder if he’s read Cory Doctorow’s “Makers” – some of the themes in it are the inevitable race to the bottom in margins / competition and how 3D printing could eliminate barriers to reproducing physical products.