How Far You Can Push Employees Without Resorting to ‘the Amazon Way’

The internet is full of stories about Amazon’s work environment. You have, of course,The New York Times claiming it’s the worst place ever. Then you have Jeff Bezos coming out and saying, “The article doesn’t describe the Amazon I know or the caring Amazonians I work with every day.”

Employees (and former employees) have come out on both sides. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Some people thrive in the environment. Others wilt. Many startups would love to grow the way Amazon has. The question is, just how hard can you push your employees?

If the worst of the worst stories about Amazon are true, that’s not the way to do it. When you need ambulances parked outside, you’re doing it wrong. Constant pressure, competition, and stress are unsustainable in the long run. Amazon’s turnover rates are super-high, and this is undoubtedly why. You need success in the long run. You can’t afford a high turnover rate–turnover is expensive. Here’s how to push your employees to the limit in a sustainable manner.

To keep reading, click here: How Far You Can Push Employees Without Resorting to ‘the Amazon Way’

Related Posts

4 thoughts on “How Far You Can Push Employees Without Resorting to ‘the Amazon Way’

  1. + a zillion.

    I’m torn over Amazon; on the one hand, I don’t really want to support a company that treats its workers like disposable crap (and don’t get me started on the whole author thing). On the other hand, I like the services they offer and as a customer, I’ve had very few problems with them.

    Grrrr…if only corporations would listen to you, Suzanne!

    1. Do you have the same reservations about going to doctors? They go through far worse times in their training.

      What about contributing to their 401k? You know that people that control those investments work 90 hour weeks, right?

      I am not interested in working in that type of environment and I think it’s not a good one, but i have no problem if someone else wants to do it.

      1. The thing that really disturbs about the stuff in the NYT is that it just lends support to the much worse stuff about how lower level workers (ie warehouse staff) are treated. These folks really don’t have too many choices in most cases. The folks who worked in the warehouse that was hitting 100deg and had an ambulance stationed at the door didn’t stay there because they liked the environment. They stayed because it paid more than welfare by a few pennies.

        The guys who are running the funds that 401k money tends to go into are making A LOT more – and are working in far better environments. No fund manager is being getting written up for taking too long to go to the bathroom, or not using the one nearest his station. Nor are these people working in 100deg temperature without even a a water bottle.

      2. What the article was trying to highlight was the working conditions so people would know if they wanted to work there. Doctors and finance workers work long hours and it is pretty common knowledge that the days are long and the pressure can be intense. It is not quite so obvious that Silicon Valley, in particular Amazon, is the same way. Google has its employees work long hours but insists on mutual respect between employees; which is apparently very lacking at Amazon. Also like Observer said, if they are treating their white-collar this way then the warehouse guys probably have it a lot worse.

Comments are closed.

Are you looking for a new HR job? Or are you trying to hire a new HR person? Either way, hop on over to Evil HR Jobs, and you'll find what you're looking for.