What Do Jeff Bezos & Peter Briger Have in Common?

“Great minds think alike.” Leaders are able to think outside the box and contemplate complex multi-dimensional strategies. What do Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Fortress’ Peter Briger have in common?

Princeton Alums Excel

Why do companies ask where you went to school? Isn’t your grade point average enough? The truth is that each educational institution has its own unique character. Princeton, Harvard, Stanford and UCLA have different cultures that color their alums. Interestingly enough, many of the early Ivy League schools were religiously affiliated. They taught the first American preachers. Princeton was established in the 1740s, before the USA even existed. The Ivy League schools have churned out political and financial leaders who learned from the accumulated wisdom of the ages. Princeton has a distinguished alumni list, including JFK, Jeff Bezos and Peter Briger.What did these leaders learn at Princeton that prepared them for future accomplishments? For one thing, Princeton students and alumni don’t seem to get in as much trouble as graduates from other schools do. Princeton alums seem to have common sense.Have you ever heard of a Princeton student going to China and shoplifting sunglasses? No. Unfortunately, when one bad incident occurs, an entire school’s reputation might be besmirched, like UCLA’s was.Therefore, Princeton students represent their alma mater, staying out of trouble and keeping their noses clean. JFK, Jeff Bezos and Peter Briger have also gained confidence by competing with the best of the best.

Jeff Bezos Knows His Customers

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos understands what his customers want. He has created an extremely efficient eTailing juggernaut that keeps entire nations awake at night. His brilliance started with the name of his online retailing powerhouse – Amazon.“What does an American know about a river in South America?” Shouldn’t he have named his company “Mississippi” or something? Bezos knows his customers can probably spell Amazon, but not Mississippi.

Peter Briger Knows His Clients

Peter Briger has also demonstrated the ability to understand his clientele. The scholarly focus of Princeton allows Peter Briger to reach the finish line while others are still warming up. A good example is his assistance of Princeton alum startups with capital.Fortress principal Peter Briger learned how to compete with the best. Princeton alum Jeff Bezos learned how to create a new online retailing model. Each learned a lot and made the most of their Princeton education.

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