The Power of Two Way Doors

Recently, Jeff Bezos published his annual letter to shareholders. You may have heard about it. It seemed to get some hype for a few days and rightly so. If you haven’t read it yet, go ahead. I’ll wait.

What did you think?

There are many nuggets you could pull out. Being obsessed with customers, sure, that’s a good one. Having a “Day 1” mentality, absolutely. How about “disagree but commit”? It’s a comment related to this philosophy I’d like to dive a little deeper into.

Jeff talks about the concept of reversible decisions. Here’s a quote:

Never use a one-size-fits-all decision-making process. Many decisions are reversible, two-way doors. Those decisions can use a light-weight process.

I love the word picture of a two-way door here. There are very few marketing or product decisions that are irreversible. This should take the weight of perfection off your shoulders. Embrace the unexpected. Embrace experimentation and learning.

This week I led a discovery workshop where we set an expectation up front that to achieve their goals, they would need to accept that some ideas weren’t going to work. We showed them this was ok because we can always adjust or reverse our actions to get the results we want. The change in atmosphere was palatable. The leadership team loosened up and didn’t try to come up with perfect solutions. As a result, we left the session with a quiver full of actionable concepts to explore and test.

Until next time.