7 components that fuel Amazon’s ‘iterative innovation’ approach, according to CEO Andy Jassy

Andy Jassy speaks on the 2021 GeekWire Summit. (GeekWire Picture/Kevin Lisota)

Andy Jassy printed his first-ever annual shareholders letter as Amazon’s chief Thursday morning, taking on a convention long-held by founder Jeff Bezos.

Jassy’s letter goes a bit longer than Bezos’ write-up final yr, and primarily focuses on how Amazon responded to the pandemic.

“We spent Amazon’s first 25 years constructing a really massive success community, after which needed to double it within the final 24 months to satisfy buyer demand,” he famous.

Jassy, who changed Bezos as CEO final summer time, offered some up to date metrics associated to Amazon’s sprawling supply community. On the finish of final yr the corporate had 410 success facilities throughout the globe, with greater than 260,000 drivers and 100 Amazon Air cargo plane getting packages to clients’ doorways.

Jassy additionally listed out seven elements of the corporate’s strategy to “iterative innovation,” which he says is “pervasive throughout each group at Amazon.” They embody:

  • Rent the Proper Builders — “We consider builders as individuals who prefer to invent, who have a look at buyer experiences, dissect what doesn’t work effectively about them, and search to reinvent them.”
  • Arrange Builders into Groups That Are as Separable and Autonomous as Potential — “Single-threaded groups will know their clients’ wants higher, spend all their waking work hours inventing for them, and develop context and tempo to maintain iterating shortly.”
  • Give Groups the Proper Instruments and Permission to Transfer Quick — “Velocity is disproportionally necessary to each enterprise at each stage of its evolution. Those who transfer slower than their aggressive friends fall away over time.”
  • You Want Blind Religion, However No False Hope — “Once you invent, you provide you with new concepts that individuals will reject as a result of they haven’t been finished earlier than (that’s the place the blind religion is available in), nevertheless it’s additionally necessary to step again and ensure you have a viable plan that’ll resonate with clients (keep away from false hope).”
  • Outline a Minimal Loveable Product (MLP), and Be Keen to Iterate Quick — “The launch product have to be ok that you simply consider it’ll be liked from the get-go … however in newer market segments, groups are sometimes higher off getting this MLP to clients and iterating shortly thereafter.”
  • Undertake a Lengthy-term Orientation — “We all know that transformational invention takes a number of years, and if you happen to’re making huge bets that you simply consider may considerably change buyer expertise (and your organization), it’s important to be in it for the long-haul otherwise you’ll quit too shortly.”
  • Brace Your self for Failure — “When it’s clear that we’ve launched one thing that received’t work, we make certain we’ve realized from what didn’t go effectively, and safe nice touchdown locations for group members who delivered effectively — or your finest folks will hesitate to work on new initiatives.”

The CEO additionally touched on AWS; units; Prime Video; the corporate’s carbon footprint; its inexpensive housing efforts; and its low Earth orbit satellite tv for pc community Mission Kuiper.

Jassy wrote about worker therapy and warehouse employee security; a current research discovered that its staff suffered critical accidents at twice the speed of rival firms final yr, CNBC reported.

“We’re not near being finished in how we enhance the lives of our workers,” Jassy wrote. “We’ve researched and created a listing of what we consider are the highest 100 worker expertise ache factors and are systematically fixing them.”

However Jassy stopped in need of addressing Amazon’s struggle with union-organizing in New York Metropolis, the place final week a gaggle of the corporate’s U.S. warehouse staff voted to kind a union for the primary time within the firm’s historical past. In his letter final yr Bezos commented on a separate union effort at a warehouse in Bessemer, Ala.

Jassy spoke with CNBC Thursday and talked about crypto, saying he doesn’t personal bitcoin that Amazon may someday promote NFTs.

Learn the 2021 letter in full right here.

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