Becoming Bezos: The Entrepreneur’s Tolerance for Risk and Uncertainty

On Behalf of | Jun 16, 2017 | Blog

In a piece on why Amazon bought Whole Foods (which it did for close to $14B, apparently making the acquisition Amazon’s largest in the company’s history), Derek Thompson for the Atlantic argues that it’s about the future of commerce itself. In this future, consumers skip the grocery store lines in favor of ordering Whole Foods delivery via Amazon’s Alexa voice service.

And, just like that, we’ll all wonder how we coped with the journey to a busy grocery store for the week’s produce.

Location, location, location

Thompson quotes a Wall Street Journal editor, who tweeted:

  • “Amazon did not just buy Whole Foods grocery stores. It bought 431 upper-income, prime-location distribution nodes for everything it does.”

This move could put founder Jeff Bezos and his company in an even better position than it is now as the biggest online retailer in the world.

A $14B bet

You see many news sources referring to this acquisition as a “bet” or “gamble,” and, at heart, that is what many business deals are. Amazon is big, but even for Amazon, $14B is a big bet. One can only imagine the amount of strategic planning and appetite for risk-taking that resides in the halls and conference rooms of Amazon’s corporate offices.

Wikipedia says that Bezos, 53, is the third-richest person in the world. There’s little doubt that his appetite for risk-taking, and his ability to plan and execute a strategic move like this Whole Foods acquisition, reflects the success he’s attained and the strength of the company he (and his employees) have built.

All entrepreneurs face what Bezos did 

At one time, though, Bezos was an unknown entrepreneur. Amazon wasn’t yet the behemoth it would become. Surely, Bezos faced a countless number of challenges along the way, just as every entrepreneur does.

On that note, the Arizona Business Daily has some tips for entrepreneurs on staying positive when starting and growing a business:

  • Become good at managing your attitude, especially in challenging times
  • Pay attention to the little things (Bezos is said to be very detail oriented)
  • Socialize with like-minded people who also strive for positivity
  • Find a coach or mentor who has been in your shoes in the past

You don’t need to become the third-richest person in the world, but you can work to see your dream become a reality, and in a sense, become every bit as successful as someone like Bezos.