Amazon mission and vision

An analysis of Amazon's mission and vision statements: How customer focused the brand is?

Being the biggest online retailer is not easy. You have to show strong commitment, focus and long term perspective. Much has been said about Jeff Bezos and his vision. Bezos and team have always stuck to their word. They have delivered and they are still delivering. If you are planning to make it big, you need to think big. Amazon made it big by planning things right and investing in customer satisfaction. Amazon is strongly committed to customer service and that is duly noted in its mission and vision statement. Its mission statement is also its vision statement. It may look a bit philosophical but is full of impact. You get to know in a second what Amazon intends to do, where it has planned to leave a distinct mark and how it is going to deliver its promise.  Mission statements are also like promises that you make not just to yourself but to all the stakeholders in your business and that you remain committed to in everything you do. At Amazon there is nothing like breaking a promise. Its mission statement is an example of a customer centered mission statement.

Amazon mission and vision
Amazon: Being customer centric

Why some companies have product centered and some customer centered mission statements?

Sometimes the focus is on the product. It is the product that the company focuses upon to serve the customer best. It goes on to make products that best suit its customers’ needs and choices. In the other case, the focus is entirely upon the customer. He is at the center of everything from the products to the everyday decisions and even the ideas and brain storming sessions.

Why such strong focus on the customer? Is he central to business?

Well, the answer is yes. It is the 21st century and you need to accept that the power is in the hands of the customer. You have to devote yourself to his service and his benefits. If you do not, you must not think of things like loyalty and competitive advantage. Now, Amazon is kind of obsessed with the idea of being customer centric.

Is that kind of obsession a good thing?

Of course it is, because customer satisfaction does not just decide just your short term business performance, it decides your market share, your competitive strength and many more things crucial to exist and fight the long term battle. Amazon’s obsession with the customer does not reduce and Bezos would not let a chance go to see the customer happier. Here is Amazon’s mission statement that also serves as its vision statement. You can also call it Amazon’s philosophy because in the true sense of the word, Amazon equates a customer with no one but God Himself.

Mission Statement:

“Our vision is to be Earth's most customer centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online”.

Analysis and Recommendations:

Earth’s most customer centric company – that may puzzle a bit. It is because there is a race to be loved by the customers.  Now, companies know how important it is to be focused at the customer. The better the customer service, the higher the loyalty and sales. There are two things that are clear from its mission statement. First of all it is Amazon’s dedication to serving the customer and second it is the size of the business. It does not clearly spell out what things it sells but still sums it up as everything that someone may want to buy online. That also shows how big Amazon aspires to be. Everything that you can buy online available at just one site - Amazon. Its mission statement, does not spell out its target market, nor the kind of products it sells or the nature of its business. It is short and explains the primary focus and top priority of Amazon which is Amazon is all about customers and their convenience and nothing else. At Amazon all roads lead to the customer.

However, there are a few things about Amazon's mission and vision statement that are not so specific and focused. It talks of Amazon's strategy, and its most important stakeholders that are its customers. Amazon is trying to build an online marketplace where the people can buy nearly everything that they may want to buy online. This also provides guidance over how the managers must act in day to day situations. Still, when it comes to the other important stakeholders like the employees, the suppliers and the society, the vision does not talk about Amazon's commitment.   It does not talk of how Amazon is handling its commitment to the shareholders and employees, its financial growth and its corporate social responsibility.  All these things are missing from  Amazon's mission and vision statement. Amazon must get more specific about how it has planned its financial growth and other things like Corporate social responsibility.

Amazon can include these points to its mission statement to make it broader such it provides a a better picture of Amazon's future. Amazon is one of the biggest brands in e-retail. Even e-bay and  Alibaba group have not been able to generate as strong customer equity as Amazon. Now, Amazon's mission clarifies its most important part of strategy but misses on the other things like, products, supplier relationships, supply chain size, market size, financial strength and other concerns like corporate citizenship and CSR. Moreover, it is not specific enough to provide guidance over daily resource allocation, decision making and handling internal concerns. All the focus has to be on the customers, but then there are other parts of a business too that add value to it. So, it lacks specificity. However, one area where Amazon's mission statement is still really full of impact is in terms of brand image. It has positioned itself as a customer oriented brand and that is what its mission statement is all about.

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