Test, Build, Accelerate and Scale – My Take On The Bezos Letters

02 January 2021

In business, it is always a good idea to take time to step back and reflect on your processes and evaluate whether you are going in the right direction.

Planning ahead, you need to be certain that you are building a certain kind of momentum in order to ensure your plans result in positive growth.

There are many ways in which you could do this but a great starting point is to follow the lead of someone who has been successful at building his business consistently.

The Bezos Letters by Steve Anderson lays out the principles by which Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, has built his business, through reviewing the letters he sent to his shareholders.

In this video, I share with you one fabulous insight I gleaned from this book and hope that it helps you to evaluate your business in the same way it has mine and my clients’.

If you would like to hear more about this please feel free to get in touch below.

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Prefer to read rather than watch and listen? No problem – here’s everything I said in the video as text: 

I recently read a book called The Bezos Letters. You might be familiar with Jeff Bezos, owner of Amazon. He is well known for his letters to his ‘share owners’, that’s what he calls them not shareholders. This book, written by Steve Anderson, goes through those letters and he has compiled the growth principles that he believes that amazon might be following.

Now, I want to read some excerpt to you from this and let’s see what you get out of this because for me, personally it acted as a good checkpoint to evaluate what’s happening in my business and in my clients’ businesses.

The Passage reads:

“While the terms test, build, accelerate and scale are familiar to many business owners, they take on a different meaning within the context of the shareholders letter.

If there is one big difference between what test, build, accelerate and scale mean at Amazon, it’s that Amazon doesn’t treat those terms as academic.

They make these cycles a part of their planning process, with the same kind of intentionality that Bezos pays to risk.

To Bezos businesses are always changing and growing. Growing businesses are always testing something, building something, accelerating something and scaling something and when you find out what works you do it all over again.”


So, as I said, for me it was a checkpoint to evaluate the business and to see what is sitting in each of these four stages and I would urge you to do that for yourself when you’re planning for the quarter or for the year or for the next three years.

What activities or what strategies are sitting in each of these four stages?

Growing businesses need momentum. You need to have certain failures because, while you’re testing, a few things will not work out and obviously you’ve got some success, which you’re not trying to build, accelerate and scale but this is like a continuum.

You need to have a good pipeline across these four stages to make sure that you are growing your entity and you’re enjoying the fruits of owning your business.

I hope that helps, I’ll be in touch with you again very soon.

If you would like to discuss any of the points covered here, please feel free to request a free call below.

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