AWS CEO Adam Selipsky: 10 Bold Remarks At Fast Company’s Innovation Festival
‘Amazon is always about having very high standards and about being vocally self-critical, which is a term you hear around here a lot,’ Selipsky says. ‘It’s an important part of my job — not just an opportunity, but a responsibility — to try and help us to continue to improve and to bring some things that maybe I’ve been able to observe being gone a few years.’
On Whether Some Customers Won’t Work With AWS’ Due To Its Amazon Affiliation
I think that’s been a bit of a meme that’s out there, and, honestly, it’s very infrequently true. There’s maybe been a couple of examples that tend to get publicized.
Amazon’s a big company now, and of course we’ve got competition — as we should — in every business. But if you look at digital entertainment, for example, AWS has big and deep relationships with folks like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO, even though there are other parts of Amazon that might compete against them. Or if you look at retail, for example, you’ve got Nike and Brooks Brothers, Shop Direct, Instacart, Zulily. I could go on, but many of these different sectors where Amazon has businesses, we have really long-term, deep, strong partnerships with these external companies.
The world is complicated, and I think we’re all used to cooperating in some areas. There might be some competition in other areas, but the reason it works is because of trust. It works because all of these external companies know that AWS has one mission only and that is to enable their success. And there’s never any compromising in any dimension on that.
AWS Customers Partnering With Amazon
Amazon is fairly well-known for having distinct businesses, and we very intentionally decentralize a lot of operations and a lot of decisions, so that we can move fast. It all gets back to innovating quickly for customers. We think that’s a really good model for doing that.
But we actually are seeing more and more a lot of our big enterprise, external customers wanting to partner across Amazon — whether it’s automotive companies who want to use AWS but are also interested in digital entertainment, whether it’s telcos who want to partner with different divisions at Amazon. We’ve actually been getting better and better at building internal mechanisms for being able to have those conversations and being able to do joint decision-making and work with external customers in a very cohesive fashion. I won’t say I think we were always great at that, but I think over the past few years — certainly while I was gone, so I’ll take no credit — the company’s gotten a lot better at that.