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 Amazon's Annual Letter Gives Insight Into a Great Company

Amazon and Amazon U.K. are superstars in customer service and ranked high in places where employees want to work. The recent annual letter by Amazon to its shareholders holds insight into how this great company runs. "The American Customer Satisfaction Index recently announced the results of its annual survey, and for the 8th year in a row customers ranked Amazon #1. The United Kingdom has a similar index, The U.K. Customer Satisfaction Index, put out by the Institute of Customer Service. For the 5th time in a row Amazon U.K. ranked #1 in that survey. Amazon was also just named the #1 business on LinkedIn’s 2018 Top Companies list, which ranks the most sought after places to work for professionals in the United States. And just a few weeks ago, Harris Poll released its annual Reputation Quotient, which surveys over 25,000 consumers on a broad range of topics from workplace environment to social responsibility to products and services, and for the 3rd year in a row Amazon ranked #1."

1. Unrealistic beliefs on scope kill high standards. "To achieve high standards yourself or as part of a team, you need to form and proactively communicate realistic beliefs about how hard something is going to be." Employees who are given unrealistic beliefs burnout and are demoralized which leads to high turnover and high costs for companies. 

2. Don't use PowerPoint to portray your points. "We don’t do PowerPoint (or any other slide-oriented) presentations at Amazon. Instead, we write narrative structured six-page memos. We silently read one at the beginning of each meeting in a kind of “study hall.”

3. Set high, but realistic standards. "Building a culture of high standards is well worth the effort, and there are many benefits. Naturally and most obviously, you’re going to build better products and services for customers – this would be reason enough! Perhaps a little less obvious: people are drawn to high standards – they help with recruiting and retention."

Implementing these ideas into your work life might not all be possible, but understanding what works for great companies can help struggling companies rework themselves. 

Written by Intuitive Edge Team

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