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Working Backwards
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An insider's view of Amazon, perfect for leaders who want to succeed in 21st-century business.

About the Author

Bill Carr joined Amazon in 1999 and spent more than fifteen years with the company. As Vice President of Digital Media, Bill launched and managed the company's global digital music and video businesses, including Amazon Music, Prime Video, and Amazon Studios. Colin Bryar joined Amazon in 1998 - four years after its founding - and spent the next twelve years as part of Amazon's senior leadership team as Amazon grew from a domestic (US-only) seller of books to a global, multi-dimensional powerhouse and innovator. For two of his years at Amazon, Colin was 'Chief of Staff' to Jeff Bezos.

Reviews

Jeff Bezos once told me that unlike Google or Apple, "Amazon doesn't have one big advantage, so we have to braid a rope out of many small advantages". Amazon has demonstrated again and again that success doesn't result from one big stroke of genius, but from a set of clear business practices consistently and boldly applied. Colin Bryar and Bill Carr dive deep into how Amazon has become the company to study if you want to succeed in 21st-century business. -- Tim O'Reilly, owner of O'Reilly Media
For those looking to change the world in ways (very) large and small via innovation and business, my strong recommendation is to dive deeply into Working Backwards. Bill and Colin have delivered a rarity of immense value, which is a powerful, high-judgement dissection of the inputs to Amazon itself. I anticipate Working Backwards to quickly become required reading in board rooms and classrooms around the world -- Jason Kilar, CEO of WarnerMedia
Colin Bryar and Bill Carr have operationalized the core management practices that lie behind Amazon's success. In particular, their insights into how any successful leader can focus on narrative and metrics to take a short-cut to the truth are essential for any leader in any industry. You'll want to have your highlighter ready and keep this book close at hand for quick reference. -- Kim Scott, bestselling author of Radical Candor
Colin and Bill give us an insider's view of Amazon during what was an extraordinary period of growth for the organization. Having partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) during my time at Red Hat and now at IBM, I can attest to their unrelenting commitment to customers. Leaders who want to foster customer obsession and drive operational excellence within their organizations should read this book. -- Jim Whitehurst, President, IBM
Working Backwards serves as a blueprint enabling leaders to implement guiding principles, operating rhythms and durable mechanisms that allow teams to scale effectively, even as your business expands at an accelerated clip. A must-read for every entrepreneur or business leader focused on driving growth. -- Mariana Garavaglia, Chief People & Business Operations Officer, Peloton
Colin and Bill have captured the essence of what it means at Amazon to start with the customer and work backwards. They both held important leadership roles at critical moments in the company's history that they've translated into interesting stories and lessons for readers. -- Serguei Netessine, Vice Dean and Dhirubhai Ambani Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at The Wharton School
Working Backwards should be read by anyone interested in the real thing - the principles, processes and practices of 21st-century management and leadership * Forbes *
Rather like a potted business school case-study, this book gives us the story as it developed at the time - and that is probably worth the cover price of the book in itself -- Financial Times
This book reads like a how-to guide, which perhaps is by design? Bryar and Carr both were long-time Amazonians and their vantage point is that of an enthusiast rather than a critic. To be sure, Amazon offers much to admire . . . It's a safe bet Amazon's core principles and practices will remain essentially intact, not because Bezos will be watching from the executive suite, but because Bryar, Carr and legions of current managers at the company believe in the Amazon way. -- Associated Press
Rather than offering a dull catalog of the company's 14 Leadership Principles and three implementation mechanisms, Mr Bryar and Mr Carr provide concrete and accessible examples of how these are put into practice across a range of functions, from hiring and communications to organizational and product design. -- New York Times

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