Amazon CEO appoints a new Technical Adviser to follow in all of his meetings

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Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, has appointed Wei Gao as his new technical adviser. He has named his adviser as “shadow” that would be following him likely in all of his business meetings. Last year, Jeffrey Helbling served as the technical adviser to Amazon CEO.

Wei Gao becomes the Second Woman as a Technical Adviser to Jeff:

Recently, CNBC reported that Gao has got the most desired position of adviser to CEO in Amazon. Ashe has got the job to have extensive insight into all the business moves made by Jeff. For this purpose, she would follow him around, travel with him and attend all of his official meetings.

The position of technical adviser to Amazon CEO is usually held for a year or two. Maria Renz became the first woman to hold this position in April 2015. Now, Gao has got this position; becoming the second woman as the shadow to Amazon CEO.

Gao worked for 13 years as a veteran in Amazon. She performed different roles in this duration. This includes senior positions inventory planning teams and in the Kindle. Most recently, she served as a vice president of forecasting. And now she got the most important position as an adviser. According to her, her formal job description is to assist Jeff in becoming the best CEO that he could be. She is now the vice president of delivery experience for Amazon.

According to the CNBC report, Jeff borrowed the idea of having a technical adviser from the management guru and CEO of Intel, Andy Grove. Initially, Andy worked on the idea of rising executives to gain more experience and exposure in the business. Now Jeff is following the steps to give more power to his executives.

Amazon CEO appoints
Jeff Bezos – Getty

Jeff instituted the role of technical adviser at Amazon in the late ’90s. Stig Leschly was the first executive who acquired the position of the first shadow to Jeff. He previously owned the company ‘Exchange.com’ which was bought by Amazon in 1999. He used to follow him in his meetings and sit there to observe all the proceedings. Once Jeff would get an idea related to his business, he would discuss it with him

According to Leschly, he was like a receptacle for the CEO to keep his ongoing activities in his mind that didn’t have a place in a normal organization. For him, this position was like one of the most exceptional things a young person could do.

Summary:

In Amazon, the role of being a “shadow” adviser is a very desirable position. Because it involves accompanying the company founder all around for a year or two and learn all aspects of the business. Jeff has been appointing executives at this post from the beginning who had already been serving in Amazon at upper positions. For this reason, the people started to criticize Amazon for lacking the diversity in its upper ranks. They are of the opinion that diversity should be a part of management. However, Jeff once stated in his all-staff meetings that he didn’t intend to alter the composition of the top executives’ team anytime soon.

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