Amazon's Jeff Bezos highlights the "problem with PowerPoint presentations" in Lex Fridman podcast
In a Lex Fridman podcast, Jeff Bezos sheds light on how Amazon meetings take place and how he likes to conduct business. And he thinks PowerPoint presentations have a problem.
Jeff Bezos, the founder of ecommerce giant Amazon and space venture Blue Origin, appeared on a Lex Fridman podcast and revealed what he prefers during Amazon meetings. He revealed some insights into what goes on in meetings during the podcast and , while indicating the importance of achieving goals, he shares detailed insights into his famous 6-page memos and how Amazon conducts meetings to ensure that happens. Check out how Amazon conducts its meetings, what Bezos really likes and dislikes, to make them as informative as possible as well as engaging and result-oriented.
Jeff Bezos on Amazon's unique meeting culture
In a clip of the podcast shared by fromprodmgmt.world, Bezos explains that his "perfect meeting" starts with “A crisp document and a messy meeting.” He adds that the document should be detailed and that it should be written with such clarity that it should be like “angels singing from on high.” The meeting itself should have people asking "questions that no one knows answers to". Fridman asks him about the famous 6-page memo, and Bezos said that they conduct a 30-minute study hall which gives the people present at the meeting the time to read the memo. After the memo is read by everyone, the meeting agenda is discussed threadbare and as he put it, "try and wander your way to a solution".
He also said, “You could say that you could read these memos in advance but the problem is people do not have time to do that.” In the podcast, he highlighted the meaningful discussions they have and the insight they get from each member which makes each meeting worth investing time in.
Further Bezos also talks about how PowerPoint presentations are not ideal for the audience. He explained, “That is the other problem with PowerPoint presentations. They are often just bullet points. And you can hide a lot of sloppy thinking behind bullet points.”
He added, “It's easy for the author and hard for the audience and a memo is the opposite.”
He concludes, “It's hard to write a six-page memo... but for the audience, it's much better.”
However, he highlights the importance of the effort and time put into preparing these six page memos. He said that the task is daunting and requires various checks to make sure it is detailed and the audience gets all the answers it is looking for within these memos.