Given that it’s the beginning of the Christmas season, “delivering happiness” seems like the perfect topic to kick off a new tradition here on LinkedIn: sharing inside lab's favorite book of the month! Have you read "Delivering Happiness" by Tony Hsieh? Don’t worry, we promise not to divulge any spoilers. Our goal is to share just enough about the books we’ve discovered and loved to motivate you to read them too.
Did you know that pursuing happiness AND making a profit are not inherent opposites when it comes to building up a business? This might come as a bit of a surprise to you. Or you might have an inexplicable urge to stuff a sock in my mouth (depending on just how bad that last bad work experience was). At the very least, you might be feeling skeptical about whether this ideal can survive in the real world. If that’s true, I challenge you to check out this book.
Not only is it insightful and easy to read, but it’ll make you laugh out loud. Like me, you might even turn the last page and realise you’ve become emotionally invested in a community and business called Zappos.
This book poses some tough questions and encourages the reader to reflect on his or her own company’s core values. In the case of Zappos, these values were built around the vision of creating outstanding customer service – aka delivering happiness. But this isn’t what makes the company unique. It’s the realization that in order to offer this to customers, Zappos needed to make it an integral part of company culture.
This meant that delivering happiness to their employees, vendors and other stakeholders was essential to fulfilling their ultimate vision of delivering happiness to their customers. Because as Tony Hsieh argues, “Your personal core values define who you are, and a company’s core values ultimately define the company’s character and brand” (p. 184, Grand Central Publishing, Kindle Edition).
As promised, we won’t give any more away – you’ll have to read it for yourself! If you have read it, what’s the biggest learning you’ve taken away from it? What values are revealed through your company culture at the moment and are they the ones you hope them to be?These are questions we’re asking ourselves here at inside labs too - because we love learning & growing and happen to agree with Jack Nicholson when he says, “the minute you’re not learning, I believe you’re dead”;-)