Delivering Happiness (Zappos)

Published on May 19, 2014

Zappos is an online website selling shoes, and it was acquired by Amazon at nearly $1 BILLION.

This is a book by Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.

I like the way Tony wrote the book, because he chose not to use a ghostwriter, even though he is not a professional writer. This makes the book reflect his personality more closely, much like he is actually “talking to you” from the book.

It’s a very enjoyable book about a company that focus on it’s culture, and how they deliver happiness to customers, and to themselves.

For individuals, character is destiny. For organisation, culture is destiny.

The first half of the book is more about the life of Tony as a kid, and also about his first company (LinkExchange) which was acquired.

The second half is much about the importance of culture and happiness, and how Zappos as a company delivers that.

Here’s what I learnt:

  • Lesson from poker can be applied to business
  • Table selection is most important (market)
  • In a long-term game, the truly good will win
  • Monthly employee newsletter called Ask Anything
  • Your culture is your brand (though it lags)
  • Brand, Culture and Pipeline strategy
  • Pipeline is pipeline of people in departments, with varied skills and experience, moving through positions. This is in contrast to people as assets. Pipeline is assets.
  • “What is your goal in life” will ultimately leads to Happiness
  • While we study stuff like how to run a marathon, why didn’t we study how to be happy?
  • Happiness frameworks for company
  • The science, and more books
    And I bought happier right after I finished this.