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Amazon's Renz: Rethink 'customer first'

Wednesday, November 11, 2015  
Posted by: Rufino Cabang
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Amazon's Maria Renz encourages NEW members to rethink
"customer first"
at the NEW Pacific Northwest event.

To stay ahead in the industry, leaders need to re-think every area of business, from advertising to merchandising, from the customers' point of view, Maria Renz of Amazon told nearly 100 emerging leaders at the NEW Pacific Northwest fall learning event, Oct. 28, 2015 at Starbucks headquarters in Seattle.

When rethinking customer centricity, "feedback is a gift," said Renz, technical advisor to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and the company's first woman "shadow" -- an executive who goes with the CEO to daily meetings, talk over problems and have substantial access to Bezos's time and insight. Renz joined event moderator Jennifer Dimaris, vice president of Starbucks Coffee Company, to share insights for "Rethinking 'Customer First.'"

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Corporations are at a disadvantage when competing against entrepreneurs, Renz said. "[When making a decision] the entrepreneur needs only one yes," Renz said, "whereas in the corporate environment a project or innovation needs yes after yes to move forward."

Dimaris reminded attendees to be bold in their thinking. "Don't be afraid to ask for what you want," she said. "I took a risk in asking Maria to speak, so don't be afraid to take a risk in order to experience great things in your life."

Companies sending delegations to the event include Altria, Amazon, Costco Wholesale Corporation, Deloitte, Procter & Gamble, Starbucks Coffee Company and Young's Market Company.

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