Guest Post, Sort Of

When I was just about to open Word Press and file today’s blog post, one of my advisees sent me a short email thanking me for a meeting we had today and including two paragraphs from a Jeff Bezos shareholder letter.  The Bezos quote is worth sharing (see below).  And it’s also worth marveling a little at the senior in high school who would first dig up the quote and then attach it to a thank you note.  I have the best job in the world.

Resist Proxies

As companies get larger and more complex, there’s a tendency to manage to proxies. This comes in many shapes and sizes, and it’s dangerous, subtle, and very Day 2.

A common example is process as proxy. Good process serves you so you can serve customers. But if you’re not watchful, the process can become the thing. This can happen very easily in large organizations. The process becomes the proxy for the result you want. You stop looking at outcomes and just make sure you’re doing the process right. Gulp. It’s not that rare to hear a junior leader defend a bad outcome with something like, “Well, we followed the process.” A more experienced leader will use it as an opportunity to investigate and improve the process. The process is not the thing. It’s always worth asking, do we own the process or does the process own us? In a Day 2 company, you might find it’s the second.”

~Jeff Bezos, 2016 Letter to Shareholders

https://www.amazon.com/p/feature/z6o9g6sysxur57t

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s