It’s been Day 1 for Jeff Bezos for about 27 years now. And even after he steps aside from his role as CEO of Amazon, the internet behemoth he founded, it will still be Day 1!
Bezos will shift his attention away from the world’s largest online retailer’s daily operation and instead focus on innovating around his passions, such as space exploration. He’ll still be dreaming up and bringing to life new products for Amazon, too.
It takes moxie to create a $386 billion business, and Jeff Bezos has it.
Moxie is made with love.
Bezos was born Jeffrey Preston Jorgenson, the son of a teen mother who married and divorced young.
But despite having a father who disengaged early, young Jeffrey was surrounded by people who loved him, starting with his mother. When he was four years old, his mother remarried, this time to a Cuban immigrant named Miguel Bezos. Young Jeffrey was soon adopted by Bezos and took his last name.
Bezos was also fortunate to have a close and loving relationship with his grandparents. He spent summers with them, working on their farm in Texas and taking long camping trips with them.
Bezos thrived, perhaps because of the love and attention he received from the adults in his life.
He continued to be lucky in love when he met the woman he eventually married, MacKenzie. They met when they both worked at a finance firm in New York City. Jeff was a rising young VP, and MacKenzie was an assistant working to support her career as a writer.
When Jeff had the idea for Amazon, MacKenzie was all in! They had only been married a short time, and launching a startup would mean leaving behind the strong success and security of careers in finance. But MacKenzie loved him, too, and was willing to risk everything with him so he could pursue this passion. She was instrumental in Amazon’s success.
Even though Jeff and Mackenzie have since parted ways, they have remained publicly supportive of one another.
Moxie can’t be blackmailed.
It sounds like something out of a spy movie. Foreign operatives actually hacked Bezos’ phone and handed off information to a tabloid, which attempted to blackmail him with steamy, intimate texts he exchanged with his mistress.
But rather than be intimidated into compliance with their demands, Bezos outed himself. He wrote a February 7th, 2019, Medium.com post detailing the blackmailing attempt, thus neutering it! The article post is below.
“Something unusual happened to me yesterday. Actually, for me, it wasn’t just unusual — it was a first. I was made an offer I couldn’t refuse. Or at least that’s what the top people at the National Enquirer thought. I’m glad they thought that because it emboldened them to put it all in writing. Rather than capitulate to extortion and blackmail, I’ve decided to publish exactly what they sent me, despite the personal cost and embarrassment they threaten,” Bezos wrote.
That “boom” sound you hear is the mic dropping.
The revelations could have been personally embarrassing to Bezos and potentially costly. He was in the midst of a divorce from his wife of 25 years. It takes moxie to face down blackmailers, and Bezos has it.
Moxie moves to the Next Big Thing.
Bezos might be leaving his role as CEO of Amazon, but he’s far from retiring. He’ll dedicate time to his passions, which include Blue Origin, the space exploration company he founded.
He’ll also devote more time to the Day One Fund, a venture dedicated to establishing Montessori-inspired preschools in underserved areas.
He’ll also devote efforts to environmental causes and continuing the Washington Post transformation, which he purchased in 2013.
Given Bezos’ track record, what do you think his impact will be?
Jeff Bezos’ Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Bezos
Amazon’s Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon_(company)
Blue origin’s Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Origin
Washington Post’s Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Washington_Post#Jeff_Bezos_era_(2013%E2%80%93present)
MacKenzie Scott’s (Bezos’ ex-wife) Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacKenzie_Scott