In a recent all hands meeting, Jeff Bezos surprised folks with his view that Amazon will fail one day. The essence of the meeting was captured in a recent article on cnbc.
From the article,
"Amazon is not too big to fail," Bezos said, in a recording of the meeting that CNBC has heard. "In fact, I predict one day Amazon will fail. Amazon will go bankrupt. If you look at large companies, their lifespans tend to be 30-plus years, not a hundred-plus years."
The articles continues,
The key to prolonging that demise, Bezos continued, is for the company to "obsess over customers" and to avoid looking inward, worrying about itself.
"If we start to focus on ourselves, instead of focusing on our customers, that will be the beginning of the end," he said. "We have to try and delay that day for as long as possible."
Consider how much time you spend at work obsessing over your customer. The inertia inside most companies is to focus internally. We email our co-workers, sit in internal meetings, create budgets and polish presentations. Much of the time, the customer is no where in these activities.
If Jeff’s right, we’d be wise to rethink our day and find a way to bring the customer back to the center of what we do every day.