So you have your own thriving store on Amazon. You are new, but already customers are flocking and buying your products and services. If you keep it up, you are bound to dominate your category and industry. But you are not alone in this endeavor. There are those that are ahead of you, and those that are falling behind.
The future looks good, but you can’t get complacent, not for a moment, when competitors are looming about waiting for the right moment to pounce and take away your market share. You have to make sure you can keep your customers happy and loyal to you.
I am an Amazon FBA seller myself just like you. And I have been following Jeff Bezos since he came into the scene. I read interviews about him, gathered news stories about his plans and achievements, and devoured books and articles written about him.
Through the years I have gathered bits of wisdom from a man who built his empire based on his uncanny ability to anticipate what customers will want.
Now I want to pay it forward and share these tips with you, so you won’t have to rummage through tons of information to get the jewel that is presented here.
- The Yin and Yang Principle
“We are stubborn on vision. We are flexible on details….
“If you’re not stubborn, you’ll give up… too soon. And 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,” said Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon.
Yin and Yang (flexible and stubborn) is what I fondly call this principle by Jeff Bezos. Hopeful entrepreneurs need both qualities in order to succeed.
You need to be resolute (stubborn) to see your goal through to completion. Yet you also need to be yielding (flexible) when opportunities present themselves; to use the most expedient method to get your work done.
In contrast to all this, older management systems are often steeped in tradition. They have a centralized organization structure, are used to having things done their way, and are likely to find themselves at odds with Bezos’ philosophy.
Being flexible means the willingness to let go of your “tried and tested methods” in favor of innovative, more expedient methods of achieving your goals.
- Begin with Business Experiments
In business, one of the greatest values of experimenting is it gives you the ability to differentiate facts from mere conjectures. Experimentation is the lifeblood of innovation. Without it companies won’t be able to stay competitive in a dynamic marketplace.
The more you experiment, the better you’ll be able to see whether a particular product or idea is marketable. Experimentation will help you become more creative, and come up with better and better ideas, products and solutions for your audience.
Jeff Bezos himself said, “If you double the number of experiments you do per year you’re going to double your inventiveness.”
There are so many facets to experimentation in business. You can use a laboratory when testing a chemical product, build a concept car if you’re in the car industry, or test different outlet locations if you’re in the retail business.
The list is virtually endless. You and your team need to brainstorm different variables, and different combinations and possibilities. Find out which variables are constant and which ones are always changing.
Once you go all this down, perform the experiment, measure the results, compare it with other results and decide which solution is best for your customers.
In order for your experiment to be effective, the results or outcome must be capable of being measured. Otherwise if you can’t determine what volume, what area, how much, how many, how low, how high, how heavy or how long, then you have no basis for knowing whether one idea yields better results than another.
Some decisions hurt in the short term but bring benefits in the long term, Jeff Bezos said on several occasions. And if your results tell you your idea will bring long-term good, then that’s the stance your business ought to take.
- Take the Initiative to Innovate
Jeff Bezos and Amazon have always been at the forefront of innovation. Whether we’re talking about technological inventions or new ways of driving positive customer experience, they are there leading the pack in forging new paths for the future.
Jeff Bezos is a pioneer. He’s not afraid to be different, especially when he’s convinced he can deliver such a clear advantage for his customers. This innovative mindset of his has led to countless triumphs in his quest to revolutionize the online retail industry.
Taking the initiative means anticipating problems and needs before they’ve even surfaced. It takes lots of experimentation, and a genuine love for what you do to be able to pull this through.
Like Jeff Bezos, when you have ran a number of experiments, proven your hypothesis, and built a solution to the problem, you now have a ready product waiting to be embraced by your customers.
- Begin with the End in Mind
One of Jeff Bezos’ strongest attributes is his ability to see beyond the next trend. He sees the current trend, predicts the next, and continues to probe what lies ahead.
Every plan or strategy he creates is anchored in his vision. He doesn’t fall for fads or momentary gain, but instead invests in long-term goals and plans.
“I’m thinking a few years out,” as Jeff Bezos always likes to say. He moves quickly from one achievement to the next, never losing sight of that goal and never resting on his laurels. That’s what separates Jeff Bezos from the rest.
- Nip Problems in the Bud
One in five business people that I have met believes that taking risks has its rewards. They thrive on high-risks investments and get a thrill out of the adrenalin rush that comes with it.
I kept an open mind, and looked it up to see what Jeff Bezos has to say about it. Well, guess what? Jeff Bezos recommends removing risks as soon as they’re identified.
Now who would you rather believe? Those who are struggling to pay their mortgage or the richest man in the world?
“Good entrepreneurs don’t like risk; they seek to reduce risk… Starting a company is already risky, and then you systematically eliminate risk step by step in those early days…
“You kind of need to systematically identify risk and then as the company gets bigger and more robust, you can start taking risks again but in those early days a lot of it is about ‘okay I have a good idea, how do we reduce risk?’,” says the big guy.
Doing business entails certain risks. You can’t eliminate it completely but there are certain things an entrepreneur can do to minimize it. We’ve seen how Jeff Bezos has catapulted his company to the top inspired by that one guiding light that is his vision.
Never for one moment did he waver from his principles, and it paid off.
You too can win your own victories in today’s cutthroat economy. All it takes is a spark of inspiration from Jeff Bezos, a bit of hard work, and a genuine connection with your target audience.
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