HR Blog

The three questions of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, for his Recruiting Managers

Jeff Bezos didn’t grow Amazon from a tiny startup into the world’s largest internet company without the strong support of great hires, and he’d be the first to admit that. Certainly, it takes the power of teamwork to build the technology colossus like Amazon.

Since the 1990s, Jeff has always asked his Recruiting Managers to rely on these 3 questions:

  • Will you admire this person?
  • Will this person raise the average level of effectiveness of the group?
  • What dimensions might this person be a superstar?

Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, the richest human being

These questions are hardly random, either. The first two questions both help Jeff and his teams determine whether a candidate will be a positive influence on those around him, an important cornerstone of their company culture.

But it’s the last question that’s the most interesting and quirky. Jeff is looking for a skill or interest that contributes to the company culture and workplace—and it doesn’t have to be related to the job at all.

“One person here is a National Spelling Bee champion,” says Jeff. “I suspect it doesn’t help her in her everyday work, but it does make working here more fun if you can occasionally snag her in the hall with a quick challenge.”

Bob Iger, CEO and head manager of Walt Disney, shares the same perspective with Jeff on how great the energy a positive individual can impact on a team. Bob has a simple hiring rule: look for optimistic people who take risks and aren’t afraid to fail.

Bob Iger – CEO of Walt Disney

Not just with the employees, Bob also pushes himself with those standards. “No one wants to follow a pessimist,” says Bob. “If your boss is Eeyore (the pessimistic donkey in Winnie-the-Pooh, do you want to work with someone like that? Oh, bother.”

A team can only perform sufficiently when every individual feels optimistic about one’s surrounding and comfortably contributes to the ultimate goal. On the other hand, it takes a whole team to support and encourage an individual to “shine”.

If your group, or team, has not achieved such harmony, it’s time to start questioning and look for the answer. Le & Associates and our team of experts can provide you the most profound consultancy, and HR solutions.

Le & Associates


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