Source: Fact of the Day 1 interview with Jeff Wilke
Published: January 2021
Flannel as a signal
During Jeff Wilke's first few years at Amazon, he and other Amazonians from the Seattle corporate offices would travel to fulfillment centers during the holiday peak to both pitch in and bring corporate staff a step closer to customers and their needs. Wilke typically worked those winter shifts wearing flannel shirts.
As the operations team grew and no longer needed the holiday help from corporate, Wilke noticed that the work in the fulfillment centers wasn't always top of mind for corporate employees. To remind teams of all the customer-centric work happening away from headquarters, Wilke began a tradition of wearing flannel shirts every day from October through December.
"The flannel gave me a chance to talk about our operations and remind everyone of how dedicated and customer-focused our colleagues in the field were, too." - Jeff Wilke