- On June 19, 2018
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Being knowledgeable about Amazon is something important these days due to its constant rise in popularity. They have been completing some of the most expensive company acquisitions in various industries in order to make more expansions to different markets.
The platform first began as an online bookstore, founded by the current CEO Jeff Bezos. He chose this name because website listings were often in alphabetical order back when he first started working on it, so he wanted his website to be at the top of the listings.
He also wanted to suggest the scale of the platform by this name, resulting in the tagline ‘Earth’s biggest bookstore’. Originally, Bezos wanted to name his company Cadabra, as in ‘Abracadabra’. However, he changed his mind when someone misheard the name as ‘cadaver’ which was too gruesome for an online bookstore.
Since it was originally a bookstore, the first book Amazon ever sold was directly from Bezos’ garage in 1995. The book was “Fluid Concepts & Creative Analogies: Computer Models of Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought”. It explores the mechanisms of intelligence through computer modeling. Specifically, it looks into how the human mind solves problems and discusses creating computer programs that show intelligent behavior.
Back then, whenever someone made a purchase through the website, a bell would ring in the office. In the first month of business, Amazon received orders from customers in 50 US states and from 45 countries all over the world.
Meanwhile, during the first year, Bezos hired mobile billboards to drive by any Barnes & Noble stores. These billboards displayed the question ‘Can’t find that book you wanted?’ followed by the Amazon’s website address.
Back in 1997, Barnes & Noble actually ended up using them, alleging that their claim ‘Earth’s Largest Bookstore’ was false. Eventually, they ended up settling out of court and Amazon continued to use their slogan.
In the early days, they have also constructed desks from cheap doors and sawed-off two-by-fours as a cost-saving measure. Reportedly, the company still gives a ‘Door Desk Award’ to its employees who help implement any particularly thrifty ideas.
In order to emphasize critical thinking over oversimplified stats, the company banned PowerPoint presentations. Instead, they all begin their meetings with a silent, 30—minute reading session about the newest topic of discussion.
Their employees spend two days every two years working at a customer service desk. This rule goes for the CEO as well. The practice was introduced to help all the employees get a better understanding of the customer service process.
Back in 1998, Amazon was dramatically under-staffed during the Christmas holiday season sale. According to their reports, all of their employees had to take a graveyard shift in the fulfillment centers so they could meet the demand. Many also brought in their friends and family to help out.
To ensure that such things never happen again, Amazon now hires a record number of employees during the holiday season. They’ve worked their way up to hiring 100,000 seasonal positions across the US network of fulfillment and sorting centers.
Although the company encourages teamwork, the teams for any project have to be limited to the number of people that could be fed by two pizzas.
Today, there are plenty of former Amazon employees owning their own blockbuster companies. This includes Jason Kilar, the founder of both Hulu and Vessel and Charlie Cheever, the creator of Quora.
At some point, the website was down for a total of 49 minutes. During this short time, they lost nearly $5.7 million in sales.
According to Google, Amazon is their biggest competitor in terms of search advertising.
Amazon has proven to be a company that can make its customers’ lives better and easier, just by focusing on convenience, price, and selection. There seems to be no end to what can they accomplish.
About the Author and Company
Josh Wardini, Editorial Contributor and Community Manager at www.16best.net. With a preliminary background in communication and expertise in community development, Josh works day-to-day to reshape the human resource management of digitally based companies. When his focus trails outside of community engagement, Josh enjoys the indulgences of writing amidst the nature conservations of Portland, Oregon.
LeanRank is a group of enthusiasts from the USA, Europe, and India. Our mission is to create high-quality web content, to assemble reliable data, and to develop valuable resources that can serve the internet economy.