Amazon is a household name, and it does not refer to the jungle. The Amazon that has taken over the world of e-commerce is the industry leader for online sales. This essay will explore the leadership and organizational strategies which Amazon uses in order to achieve their status as the leader in internet sales. The selling strategies, quality products, and the results of the strategies with the products is explored and reveals that Amazon has a unique structure when it comes to leadership and organization.
Organization and leadership. The organization and leadership of Amazon is one that has 14 parts to it outlined on the Amazon website:
1 Customer obsession
3 Invent and simplify
4 Are right, a lot
5 Learn and be curious
6 Hire and develop the best
7 Insist on the highest standards
8 Think big
9 Bias for action
11 Earn trust
12 Dive deep
13 Have backbone, disagree and commit
14 Deliver results (Amazon, 2018)
These 14 tenets are what drives Amazon’s organizational culture to have the success that they have achieved. All of the Amazon organization prioritizes their leadership and decision-making off these 14 parts. Customer obsession is the first priority. This means that Amazon puts their customers first and foremost. The priority on customer satisfaction is likely one of the greatest reasons that Amazon is as successful as it has been.
Furthermore, the tenet to “hire and develop the best” has proven to be a major component in the success strategy. Amazon has been criticized for the manner that this tenet is played out in corporate culture for it has Darwinian-type firings that incentivize others to work their hardest (Rigoni & Nelson, 2015). Gallup has stated that the opinion on Amazon’s strategy is a winning one, despite criticisms that the strategy ignores employee needs and creates a cutthroat work atmosphere (Rigoni & Nelson, 2015).
Selling strategies. The selling strategies that Amazon employs are “winning” strategies. Amazon is an open marketplace, meaning that multiple sellers can sell the same product for competitive prices (Rigoni & Nelson, 2015). Furthermore, Amazon has data-driven leadership (Rigoni & Nelson, 2015). What this means is that Amazon has precise systematic improvements based upon live data that reflects customer behaviors (Rigoni & Nelson, 2015). The selling strategies from Amazon are based purely on analytics, and not on relationships with sellers (Harrison, 2017). The way that Amazon employs these analytics is to have software searching tools that seek out all products and their best possible prices (Harrison, 2017). Through the analytics of customer behavior and the tenet to hire and develop the best talent, the selling strategy is driven by knowledgeable effective leadership: “Leaders ensure that defects do not get sent down the line and that problems are fixed so they stay fixed” (Amazon, 2018).
Quality products. Amazon is able to deliver quality products because sellers compete to be sold through Amazon since the site generates the most customer traffic on the entire internet (Harrison, 2017). Therefore, the traffic that is generated through Amazon may exceed the traffic that any single brand could attract. Amazon is not just a place to sell products, but it is the perfect place for sellers to advertise their products (Harrison, 2017). Therefore, the variety and quality of products offered through Amazon are unparalleled by any other retailer. The analytics of selling successes that Amazon employs back up the open marketplace. As long as a product is not a counterfeit product, and the seller gives an accurate description, the product can be sold for whatever the seller wants (Harrison, 2017). Therefore, brand names are offered at open market prices under a recognized, trusted name of Amazon.
Results. The results of the Amazonian organizational strategy are that people are hired and fired based on their ability to produce great customer-driven results. This may not make the most enjoyable work environment for the average Amazonian worker who is driven to compete against their co-workers in order to simply keep their job (Harrison, 2017). However, the result of this strategy is great customer results. Amazon is not in business to please their employees above and beyond what is necessary. Amazon is results-driven and customer-motivated. It makes sense that Amazon is the leading retailer since the beginning and the end of their leadership and organizational strategy is customer satisfaction. The result of Amazon’s selling strategy is perfectly formulated by the customer’s behavior online. Amazon bases its product line on customer expectations along with the assurance that the customer is getting the best possible price (Harrison, 2017).
In conclusion, Amazon is the leader in sales industry-wide because of their unique approach to customer satisfaction through innovative leadership and organizational strategies. Amazon’s 14 tenets of leadership and organizational culture are proof of the strategy to “hire and develop the best” and to always prioritize the customer as number one. Although Amazon has been criticized for its organizational structure and leadership principles that breed a stressful and demanding work atmosphere, it appears that the end result of the Amazonian approach to leadership and organizational culture is customer satisfaction. Amazon’s leadership principles keep the product line free of defects and ensure customer satisfaction. The end-result is that there are far more customers who order from Amazon than from any other retailer—and this fact is a self-fulfilling fact because sellers flock to Amazon to sell and advertise their quality products to access Amazon’s immense customer base.