Every Day is Day One

In April of 2017, Amazon Founder and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos made a strong statement to his shareholders: embrace the start-up culture.

Known as the Day 1 Philosophy, it was created many years ago, back when Amazon was just getting started in the late 1990s. Bezos worked out of an Amazon building called “Day 1” and believed that Amazon should always embody this mentality of a start-up company. When businesses continue to evolve, they ultimately lose the Day 1 mentality and focus on less irrelevant things (called Day 2) which can lead to decline, and business closure.

Image Source: Reddit.com

And yes, his desk is a door haphazardly drilled into 4×6 boards.

Bezos explains, “Day 2 is stasis. Followed by irrelevance. Followed by excruciating, painful decline. Followed by death. And that is why it is always Day 1.”

It’s this thinking that has helped Amazon become, and stay a household name.

Furthermore, in the 2017 shareholder letter Bezos stressed the importance of going back to the basics. He discussed focusing on the essentials of an organization, such as the customers, industry trends, and making quick decisions to help propel the business forward.

So, what are some things management can do today to implement the Day 1 philosophy? 

-Build better customer relationships by rewarding your employees

Focusing on customers and building stronger relationships begins with your employees. When employees are highly engaged in their work, more likely than not you’ll also have happy customers, which builds stronger customer relationships. In fact, a study conducted by Washington State University found that employee satisfaction is directly linked to customer satisfaction.

So, what’s a great way for an organization to increase employee engagement and thus customer engagement? Employee recognition programs! When employees are appreciated and recognized for their efforts they’ll feel more valued, and motivated to continue producing great work. At Awardco we believe that recognition programs should use innovative technology to reward employees with items that they actually want and will use.

Through employee recognition programs, you’re building a culture of caring, which will directly reflect in your customer service.

-Hire employees that believe in your mission and values

Your mission statement and business values are not just something to place on your hallways and walk away from. They’re the foundation of your culture and because of that, you need to hire talented people that believe in them, and will live by them in their job.  

Shutterstock: By kurhan

More like where do YOU see YOURSELF in five years?

Take a look at both your hiring and onboarding processes to see where you can fine tune to get better results, that is, stellar employees!

-Network with others in your industry

A great way to stay up-to-date in industry trends and trends outside of your organization is to have employees network with other industry leaders and workers. Have your company host a seminar or event where everyone can learn and develop skills that will help them now and in the future.

Furthermore, events like these can help your business embrace current trends so they can be successful down the road.

Bezos said it best, “The outside world can push you into Day 2 if you won’t or can’t embrace powerful trends quickly. If you fight them, you’re probably fighting the future. Embrace them and you have a tailwind.”

-Be transparent in your decision-making

Lastly, it’s important that when you makes decisions you communicate with employees. In the start-up culture when a high quality decision is made quickly, every employees know about it because of the nature of a small business. Although it may not be possible to do with every decision, work to bring transparency into the process as a way to instill better trust between upper management and employees.

In addition, although not everyone will agree with each decision that is made, when you’re transparent, it’s more likely everyone will be motivated to achieve the same organizational mission and goals.

Instead of falling into the Day 2 trap, be like Amazon and keep these four tips in mind to really focus on what matters to help achieve business success.

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