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3 questions Jeff Bezos asked before hiring someone for Amazon that everyone should consider

October 22, 2020

The e-commerce company has high standards of recruitment suggested by its own founder.

3 min read


  • Will you admire this person?
  • Does this person increase the average effectiveness of the group they join?
  • In what area could this person be a superstar?
3 questions Jeff Bezos asked before hiring someone for Amazon that everyone should consider
3 questions Jeff Bezos asked before hiring someone for Amazon that everyone should consider

Would you like to work at Amazon or learn more about the founder’s human resources? That will interest you. One of the company’s first employees said in a 1999 interview that Jeff Bezos was responsible for interviewing candidates and that that person should raise the standards of hiring for the next applicant.

However, Bezos’ schedule got tougher as his company grew and of course he is no longer responsible for the company’s human resources department, but through a 1998 letter he made clear the high standards for hiring Amazon must and have three key questions for applicants.

According to Tom Popomaronis in an article for CNBCAlthough these questions were written 22 years ago, they are timeless and should be considered by everyone, recruiters and candidates alike.

Image: Almond Ngan | Getty Images

In his interviews, Bezos asked employees to answer these three questions before making a decision:

1. Are you going to admire this person?

“When you think of the people your life has admired, they are likely the ones you learned from or set an example from. For my part, I’ve always tried to work only with people I admire, and I encourage people here to be just as demanding. Life is definitely short to do something else, ”says Bezos in his letter.

2. Does this person increase the average effectiveness of the group they are joining?

“We want to fight against entropy. The bar must rise continuously. I ask people to imagine the company in 5 years. At this point each of us should look around and say, “The standards are so high now boy I’m glad I got in when I did!”

In this section, the founder of Amazon refers to the fact that he always needs to raise the standards of recruitment.

3. In what area could this person be a superstar?

“Many people have unique skills, interests and perspectives that enrich the working environment for all of us. Often times it’s something that doesn’t even have to do with their job. “This has to be taken into account by employers in order to improve the quality of the working environment.