Zappos Tour Reaction
When I took the Zappos tour back in October, I had tons of video footage. I had dreams of making the best Zappos video documentary ever. All that daunting goal did was send me into analysis paralysis since there were already tons of great videos out there. In keeping with my less talk more action thing to change for 2014, I’m writing my authentic reaction to my Zappos tour experience.
The first thing that came to mind was this place is cool. Workers were packing boxes outside to Dead or Alive, You Spin Me Round (Like a Record). After a fun welcome orientation and video, I
had the pleasure of touring with Ray the Zappos Outlaw.
Having worked at a call center company before, the relaxed carefree memories came rushing back. Ray addressed all his co workers with a friendly “Hey Friend” and there was a lot of positive energy flowing in the new downtown Las Vegas campus.
There were many eating areas that were stocked with free beverages and happy employees taking a break. There were numerous highlights. We walked through a hallway with plaques commemorating major sales milestones. We took pictures in the infamous royal chair. We passed by CEO Tony Hsieh’s open cubicle. We saw Tony’s email handling team which goes through about 2000 emails a day. We met the inspirational career coach who came up the ranks from an entry level position. I won a dance off as tour groups who cross each others path needed to battle it out. We learned about Zappos’ efficient shipping processes. All in all, it was a memorable tour.
After coming home, my friends asked if I would ever work at Zappos. I quickly said no. Having already come from a call center environment I thought I needed to push forward not go back. Some Zapponians rocked their tattoos and gave off a counter culture, extreme sports feel. I felt it was a good place to start a career, but not somewhere I would go at my stage. I usually follow rules and do what I’m told so I don’t think I would really mesh with the Zappos culture.
One of my friends questioned aren’t you trying to be happy, comfortable in your own skin, and not afraid to express yourself no matter what other people think? Yes. Well aren’t those folks at Zappos the perfect example? I stopped dead in my tracks. They were right.
Was I so into the corporate image that I was missing what is truly important? Did I deceive myself into thinking I figured it out when in actuality I couldn’t be further from the truth? Was I being a snob and letting my prejudices cloud my vision? Am I so old that I am forgetting how to be true to myself, be fully self expressed and happy like when I was younger without the weight of my current responsibilities?
Taking a step back, Zappos is the best place to work if you want to be happy and in touch with your authentic self. The Zappos tour not only gives you a glimpse of a highly efficient and passionate, billion dollar company that sports what could be the happiest and healthiest working culture around. It also turns the spotlight on you and asks, “Are you truly happy with your job and more importantly, are you truly happy with yourself?”