American entrepreneur and Amazon co-founder Jeff Bezos recently spoke with podcaster Lex Friedman about what he thinks an ideal negotiation should be. It is interesting that his vision of conducting work meetings is significantly different from the usual for many businessmen.
Jeff Bezos has a very specific approach to conducting meetings, and the «perfect» one starts with many days of preparation. For starters, he finds slideshow presentations ineffective and prefers very clear notes instead.
New hires at Amazon and its rocket company Blue Origin may be surprised by the meeting culture he has introduced, he said.. They begin with the participants silently studying the six-page memorandum for 30 minutes , after which the discussion begins.
An entrepreneur believes that PowerPoint presentations are easy to create, but much more difficult to understand. Written detailed notes require more effort from the author — Bezos himself prepares for some meetings for weeks, and sometimes for months.
He is sure that clear and detailed structuring of information helps meeting participants ask more productive questions and search for the truth. Whereas presentations, in his opinion, were invented in order to hide a careless way of thinking behind overly vague theses.
Although the preparation for negotiations, according to the billionaire, should be very thorough, the meeting itself should be easy , and its somewhat chaotic atmosphere should encourage the development of creative ideas.
Also , the entrepreneur requires employees to search for the truth, or the only correct solution. In particular, it rejects most methods of resolving business disputes.
And he introduced the rule of two pizzas in his companies. If this amount of food is not enough to feed the participants of the negotiations, it means that too many people have been invited to them. This approach, according to Bezos, promotes productivity and helps avoid groupthink.
The businessman will step down as CEO of e-commerce giant Amazon in 2021, but he still adheres to the «Day 1» philosophy , which he has also adapted to hosting meetings. It is to work and make decisions with the same speed and willingness to take risks, as in startups that are just emerging.