business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Seattle Times has a story about the "hundreds of thousands of people steeped in the specific Amazon principles and practices that Jeff Bezos laid out to shape what is now a 25-year-old technology and commerce juggernaut. When they leave to start or join other companies," the story says, "they often adopt and adapt those principles in their new ventures, spreading the Bezos way, with varying degrees of success."

There are, the story says, "more than 40 current startup companies in Washington state alone … led by former Amazonians. The company won’t say how many former employees there are."

Among the differentiating principles cited in the story: "directing employees to 'have backbone; disagree and commit,' for example, and 'insist on the highest standards' … Other Bezos directives - among the most famous, teams should be small enough to be fed with two pizzas - have shaped Amazon’s corporate structure. Former employees say it functions as a collection of startups, each with the resources and support of a mega corporation. In this way, Amazon is a training ground for would-be entrepreneurs."
KC's View:
I am totally convinced that having an Amazon pedigree can be an enormous advantage for the modern entrepreneur. It isn't enough all by itself - you actually have to have a good idea - but it gives you a lot of the tools to experiment and implement effectively. It is what helps make people like our own Tom Furphy - who in addition to doing the "Innovation Conversation" with me here actually has a real job starting and running disruptive and transformational companies - so smart, insightful and successful.