Why is Amazon so innovative? According to Quora users, it has to do with leadership and customer service. On the Q&A social networking site one user posed the question, “What allows Amazon to be so innovative?,” and others chimed in to help answer.

Jason Crawford, a former Amazon employee, responded with a few reasons including “visionary leadership” and “customer focus.” He wrote:Jeff Bezos built an online retailer before most people knew what the Internet was. He was talking about what he called the ‘machine-to-machine Web’ before the term ‘web services’ was even coined.” and “Amazon is driven by serving customers and creating value for them, not by beating competitors or by winning any piece of some pre-existing market. This helps keep them focused on a consistent strategy and prevents them from wasting resources on me-too or copycat products.”

Adisa Nicholson, a Web developer/music producer/novelist wrote: “They have an alternative view to growth and emerging markets. When they acquire a company, rather than seize all its assets for itself (Amazon), and shut down the acquired company, they instead leave it running. Amazon believes that they can provide better customer satisfaction and profits by keeping both companies running, using their newly acquired technology/market share, and instead running two competing services of the same thing.”

Charlie Haims, an investor, wrote. “One word: Leadership.  This means having the vision for this type of innovation, inspiring others to buy into it, and the driving everyone to execute on it.”

What do you think of this discussion? Do you think that Amazon is innovative? If so, why/why not?