Jeff Bezos talks about what he can, and can’t, bring to The Washington Post.
From the first day at Amazon 18 years ago, they stuck with three principles: “Put the customer first. Invent. And be patient.” These core ideas may be equally useful in trying to solve the dilemma confronting all newspapers, particularly journalistic icons like the Post.
“I had to convince myself that I could bring something to the table,” he said. “I discussed this at great length with Don. I thought I could, because I could offer runway and some skill in technology and the Internet and a point of view about long-term thinking, reader focus and the willingness to experiment.” [ . . . . ]
“There’s no lone genius who figures it all out and sends down the magic formula. You study, you debate, you brainstorm and the answers start to emerge. It takes time. Nothing happens quickly in this mode. You develop theories and hypotheses, but you don’t know if readers will respond. You do as many experiments as rapidly as possible. ‘Quickly’ in my mind would be years.”