The Jeff Bezos Approach to Coaching

What Jeff Bezos’ business strategy can teach us about coaching.

Jeff Bezos didn’t become the richest person in the world on accident.

While he has certainly benefited from fortuitous events, much of his success can be traced back to a few timeless truths.

Here’s how Bezos described Amazon’s business strategy:

I very frequently get the question: “What’s going to change in the next 10 years?” That’s a very interesting question.

I almost never get the question: “What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?” And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two.

You can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time. In our retail business, we know that customers want low prices, and I know that’s going to be true 10 years from now. They want fast delivery; they want vast selection. It’s impossible to imagine a future 10 years from now where a customer comes up and says, “Jeff I love Amazon, I just wish the prices were a little higher.” Or, “I love Amazon, I just wish you’d deliver a little slower.” Impossible.

So we know the energy we put into these things today will still be paying off dividends for our customers 10 years from now. When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.”

Coaches can learn from this.

There are certain things that will always be true that lead to success in sports.

Things like:

  • Connection with players is key
  • Clear communicators win
  • Context > Content
  • Data is only as good as its interpretation
  • First principles of physical movement
  • The defined rules of your sport
  • Newton’s Laws of Motion

You can build a coaching strategy around these things which are stable in time. The fundamentals and first principles of your sport offer tremendous ROI.

It’s true that sometimes we need escape competition and innovate.

But more often than not, success is all about focusing on the things that don’t change.