HR Strange But True!
August 12, 2009

Jeff Bezos, CEO of online retail giant, didn't take the details of the acquisition to the press, but rather to the employees and customers directly--via YouTube.

Amazon recently bought the online shoe retailer Zappos for a staggering $920 million. Instead of taking his statement about the acquisition to the press, Bezos was busy filming an eight minute YouTube video, according to the LA Times' Tech Blog.

Addressing the future of the two companies, and speaking specifically to employees and shareholders, Bezos took to YouTube and his message was instantly picked up by twitter users, bloggers, and other social media buffs who continued to link to, and share the video.

The video message speaks to the culture of both Amazon and Zappos and their plan to work together to continue success. Bezos talks about the humble beginnings of Amazon, and conveys “Everything I Know,” a short list of business principles he hopes to see continued in the two companies. He brings up the importance of “customer obsession” and points out that he truly appreciates the culture of Zappos, reassuring employees that they are in good hands.

“I have a good feeling for how important that culture is to Zappos, the Zappos brand, the Zappos customers, the Zappos employees and that culture and the Zappos brand are huge assets that I value very much, and I want to see those things continue…” Bezos says.

With more reach than a memo, and more personality that a press release, Bezos' YouTube move could be the next step in personalizing messages to customers, shareholders, and employees alike. Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh similarly posted a statement in the Zappos blog regarding the future of the company and addressing the burning question: Will I still have a job. So, it begs the question, will your next message to your employees take the form of a YouTube video?

Source: Gawker , LA Times Tech Blog

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