Zappos offers an example of a new way of work. The company’s emphasis on culture reminds me of Dreamfish, as creating a creative collaborative culture has been primary for us. A healthy culture pays off in multiple forms of value – personal meaning and purpose for employees, customer benefits, and financial impact.
The Zappos strategy is to support an empowering company culture first, and enable the culture to inform how customers experience Zappos. Zappos also empowers their reps to deliver on their “wow customer experience” as they see fit. And the strategy delivers. Started in 1999, Zappos, made a billion in gross merchandise sales in 2008.
Zappos people decide on what culture they want to create. They come up with activities they want to practice. For example, they have a weekly parade through the office, with themes and costumes such as Oktoberfest with Lederhosen. Here is Oktoberfest at Zappos…
At Ted conference, Loic Le Meur, Seismic founder, interviewed Tony Hsieh, Zappos CEO in a bathroom about culture and company experience. Well, a bathroom interview is a story itself. Lidija Davis at ReadWrite Web has the scoop here.
Creating a culture is about commitment to practice. Culture is created through what the community in the company physically practices in their interactions. If you want a culture of health, do healthy things. Notice your patterns, because these are your values in action. The proof is in the Lederhosen.