It’s no secret that Amazon has high expectations for employees. But did you know that according to David Niekerk, one of the designers of Amazon’s warehouse-management system, the company’s policies are in part shaped by Jeff Bezos’ belief that people are inherently lazy?
Some of the policies include a short-term employment model that doesn’t provide employees many opportunities for advancement, using technology to limit break time and track productivity, and not guaranteeing wage increases after the first three years.
Niekerk says that Bezos believes workers’ desire to perform well decreases over time, because our nature as humans is to expend as little energy as possible to get what we want or need. Bezos has said that the company is working “to do a better job for our employees” and that Amazon needs “a better vision for how we create value for people – a vision for their success.” And I agree.
Because the truth is that Amazon – and every other company for that matter – is only as great as the people who embody the mission, embrace the vision, and go above and beyond to ensure the company delights customers. Brands that understand this drive employee engagement, employee empowerment, and employee satisfaction.
Jill, What Can I Do? Brainstorm how you can create value for people (consider asking employees for their thoughts) and then do it. We know that when employee’s needs are met, they respond with high levels of engagement and commitment. They come to work motivated, inspired, and enthusiastic, and go the extra mile to support the organization’s success. There’s nothing more you could ask for.