I read an interesting interview with Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon; and as we start the new year, I think his suggestion of “starting with the customer” is where any company should start. Here is an excerpt of the interview. His philosophy is the same philosophy we are pursuing here at Welocalize.
“We start with the customer and work our way backward. We learn whatever skills we need to service the customer. We build whatever technology we need to service the customer. We are inventors, so you won’t see us focusing on me-too areas. There are two ways that companies can extend what they’re doing. One is they can take an inventory of their skills and competencies, and then they can say, “OK, with this set of skills and competencies, what else can we do?” And that’s a very useful technique that all companies should use. But there’s a second method, which takes a longer-term orientation. It is to say, rather than ask what are we good at and what else can we do with that skill, you ask, who are our customers? What do they need? And then you say we’re going to give that to them regardless of whether we currently have the skills to do so, and we will learn those skills no matter how long it takes.”