In the process, he discovered the story of how Amazon became the Everything Store. But he also discovered the CEO epic rants.
Here is greatest hits, collected and relayed by veterans. Enjoy!
“Are you lazy or just incompetent?”
“I’m sorry, did I take my stupid pills today?”
“Do I need to go down and get the certificate that says I’m CEO of the company to get you to stop challenging me on this?”
“Are you trying to take credit for something you had nothing to do with?”
“If I hear that idea again, I’m gonna have to kill myself.”
“We need to apply some human intelligence to this problem.”
[After reviewing the annual plan from the supply chain team] “I guess supply chain isn’t doing anything interesting next year.”
[After reading a start-of-meeting memo] “This document was clearly written by the B team. Can someone get me the A team document? I don’t want to waste my time with the B team document.”
[After an engineer’s presentation] “Why are you wasting my life?”
Jeff Bezos pursuant to veterans
[About Bezos’ laugh] “You can’t misunderstand it,” says Rick Dalzell, Amazon’s former chief information officer, who says Bezos often wields his laugh when others fail to meet his lofty standards. “It’s disarming and punishing. He’s punishing you.”
“This is not somebody who takes pleasure at tearing someone a new a--hole,” says Kim Rachmeler, an executive who worked at Amazon for more than a decade. “He is not that kind of person. Jeff doesn’t tolerate stupidity, even accidental stupidity.”
“He called me a ‘complete f------ idiot’ and said he had no idea why he hired idiots like me at the company, and said, ‘I need you to clean up your organization,” Bruce Jones recalls. “It was brutal. I almost quit. I was a resource of his that failed. An hour later he would have been the same guy as always, and it would have been different. He can compartmentalize like no one I’ve ever seen.”
“It’s a weird mix of a startup that is trying to be supercorporate and a corporation that is trying hard to still be a startup,” says Jenny Dibble, who was a marketing manager there for five months in 2011. She found her bosses were unreceptive to her ideas about using social media and that the long hours were incompatible with raising a family. “It was not a friendly environment!”