Amazon 4th Principle: Are Right, a Lot

The fourth Leadership Principle of the Amazon Way is:

Are Right, a Lot
Leaders are right a lot. They have strong business judgment and good instincts.

According to Jeff Bezos, people who were right a lot of the time were people who often changed their minds. He doesn’t think consistency of thought is a particularly positive trait. It’s perfectly healthy — encouraged, even — to have an idea tomorrow that contradicted your idea today.

He’s observed that the smartest people are constantly revising their understanding, reconsidering a problem they thought they’d already solved. They’re open to new points of view, new information, new ideas, contradictions, and challenges to their own way of thinking.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a well formed point of view, but it means you should consider your point of view as temporary.

What trait signified someone who was wrong a lot of the time? Someone obsessed with details that only support one point of view. If someone can’t climb out of the details, and see the bigger picture from multiple angles, they’re often wrong most of the time.

Summing-up: We should be willing to look for better ways to do something, even if it’s something that we already handle well. Smart people is flexible and open minded.


  1. Mala Rajput

    This is an excellent principal; one That closely resonates with my own attributes. I used to think that changing minds is not a good attribute, but this text identifies with my key attributes and now I will use it as a strength rather then an area of weakness.

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