Jeff Bezos Quotes

“We’ve had three big ideas at Amazon that we’ve stuck with for 18 years, and they’re the reason we’re successful: Put the customer first. Invent. And be patient.”

 

 

 

“If you’re competitor-focused, you have to wait until there is a competitor doing something. Being customer-focused allows you to be more pioneering.”

 

 

 

 

“You can have the best technology, you can have the best business model, but if the storytelling isn’t amazing, it won’t matter. Nobody will watch.”

 

 

 

“Your margin is my opportunity.”

 

 

 

 

“I strongly believe that missionaries make better products. They care more. For a missionary, it’s not just about the business. There has to be a business, and the business has to make sense, but that’s not why you do it. You do it because you have something meaningful that motivates you.”

 

 

 

 

“All businesses need to be young forever. If your customer base ages with you, you’re Woolworth’s.”

 

 

 

“In the old world, you devoted 30% of your time to building a great service and 70% of your time to shouting about it. In the new world, that inverts.”

 

 

 

 

“There are two kinds of companies, those that work to try to charge more and those that work to charge less. We will be the second.”

 

 

 

“We are stubborn on vision. We are flexible on details.”

 

 

 

 

“If you only do things where you know the answer in advance, your company goes away.”

 

 

 

 

“We’ve done price elasticity studies, and the answer is always that we should raise prices. We don’t do that, because we believe — and we have to take this as an article of faith — that by keeping our prices very, very low, we earn trust with customers over time, and that that actually does maximize free cash flow over the long term.”

 

 

 

“If you’re long-term oriented, customer interests and shareholder interests are aligned.”

 

 

 

“A company shouldn’t get addicted to being shiny, because shiny doesn’t last.”

 

 

 

“All of my best decisions in business and in life have been made with heart, intuition, guts… not analysis.”

 

 

 

 

“Sometimes we measure things and see that in the short term they actually hurt sales, and we do it anyway.”

 

 

 

 

 

“We are comfortable planting seeds and waiting for them to grow into trees.”

 

 

 

 

“There are two ways to extend a business. Take inventory of what you are good at and extend out from your skills. Or determine what your customers need and work backwards, even if it requires learning new skills.”

 

 

 

 

“Friends congratulate me after a quarterly-earnings announcement and say, ‘Good job, great quarter.'” “And I’ll say, ‘Thank you, but that quarter was baked three years ago.'”

 

 

 

 

“We innovate by starting with the customer and working backwards. That becomes the touchstone for how we invent.”

 

 

 

 

“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.”

 

 

 

 

“Market research doesn’t help. If you had gone to a customer in 2013 and said, ‘Would you like a black, always-on cylinder in your kitchen about the size of a Pringles can that you can talk to and ask questions, that also turns on your lights and plays music?’ I guarantee you they’d have looked at you strangely and said, ‘No, thank you.'”

 

 

 

 

“I do get asked, quite frequently ‘What’s gonna change in the next 10 years?’ I’m rarely get asked, and it’s probably more important — and I encourage you to think about this — is the question what’s not going to change? The answer to that question can allow you to organize your activities. You can work on those things with the confidence to know that all the energy you put into them today is still going to pay dividends in the years to come.”

 

 

 

“Failure and invention are inseparable twins. To invent you have to experiment, and if you know in advance that it’s going to work, it’s not an experiment.”

 

 

 

 

“I think frugality drives innovation, just like other constraints do. One of the only ways to get out of a tight box is to invent your way out.”

 

 

 

“There’ll always be serendipity involved in discovery.”

 

 

 

 

“You have to be willing to be misunderstood if you’re going to innovate.”

 

 

 

 

“If you double the number of experiments you do per year, you’re going to double your inventiveness.”

 

 

 

 

“Invention requires a long-term willingness to be misunderstood. You do something that you genuinely believe in, that you have conviction about, but for a long period of time, well-meaning people may criticize that effort. When you receive criticism from well-meaning people, it pays to ask, ‘Are they right?’ And if they are, you need to adapt what they’re doing. If they’re not right, if you really have conviction that they’re not right, you need to have that long-term willingness to be misunderstood. It’s a key part of invention.”

 

 

 

 

“One common pitfall for large organizations – one that hurts speed and inventiveness – is ‘one-size-fits-all’ decision making…The end result of this is slowness, unthoughtful risk aversion, failure to experiment sufficiently, and consequently diminished invention. We’ll have to figure out how to fight that tendency.”

 

 

 

“To get something new done you have to be stubborn and focused, to the point that others might find unreasonable.”

 

 

 

 

“If you decide that you’re going to do only the things you know are going to work, you’re going to leave a lot of opportunity on the table.”

 

 

 

“If you’re watching your competitors, you’re unlikely to invent a bunch of stuff on your own.”

 

 

 

“Me-too companies have not done that well over time.”

 

 

 

 

 

“We take risks all the time, we talk about failure.” “We need big failures in order to move the needle. If we don’t, we’re not swinging enough. You really should be swinging hard, and you will fail, but that’s okay.”

 

 

 

 

“We all know that if you swing for the fences, you’re going to strike out a lot, but you’re also going to hit some home runs.”

 

 

 

 

“The difference between baseball and business, however, is that baseball has a truncated outcome distribution. When you swing, no matter how well you connect with the ball, the most runs you can get is four. In business, every once in a while, when you step up to the plate, you can score 1,000 runs.”

 

 

 

 

“If you’re not stubborn, you’ll give up on experiments too soon.”

 

 

 

 

“If you’re not flexible, you’ll pound your head against the wall and you won’t see a different solution to a problem you’re trying to solve.”

 

 

 

 

“If you never want to be criticized, for goodness’ sake don’t do anything new.”

 

 

 

“Companies are rarely criticized for the things that they failed to try. But they are, many times, criticized for things they tried and failed at.”

 

 

 

“We understand that and believe in failing early and iterating until we get it right. When this process works, it means our failures are relatively small in size (most experiments can start small), and when we hit on something that is really working for customers, we double-down on it with hopes to turn it into an even bigger success.”

 

 

 

 

“When you look at something like, go back in time when we started working on Kindle almost seven years ago…. There you just have to place a bet. If you place enough of those bets, and if you place them early enough, none of them are ever betting the company. By the time you are betting the company, it means you haven’t invented for too long.”

 

 

 

 

“When you think about the things that you will regret when you’re 80, they’re almost always the things that you did not do. They’re acts of omission. Very rarely are you going to regret something that you did that failed and didn’t work or whatever.”

 

 

 

“You can have a job, or you can have a career, or you can have a calling.”

 

 

 

 

 

“If you can somehow figure out how to have a calling, you have hit the jackpot, cause that’s the big deal.”

 

 

 

 

“If you can make a decision with analysis, you should do so. But it turns out in life that your most important decisions are always made with instinct and intuition, taste, heart.”

 

 

 

 

“Where you are going to spend your time and your energy is one of the most important decisions you get to make in life.”

 

 

 

 

“The smartest people are constantly revising their understanding, reconsidering a problem they thought they’d already solved. They’re open to new points of view, new information, new ideas, contradictions, and challenges to their own way of thinking.”

 

 

 

 

“People who are right a lot listen a lot, and they change their mind a lot. People who are right a lot change their mind without a lot of new data. They wake up and reanalyze things and change their mind. If you don’t change your mind frequently, you’re going to be wrong a lot. People who are right a lot want to disconfirm their fundamental biases. “

 

 

 

“Life’s too short to hang out with people who aren’t resourceful.”

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