The name – Delivering Happiness – was intriguing for a book from the CEO of Zappos.com – a ecommerce company that delivers shoes and clothing. I couldn’t have let this book pass by without reading, primarily because my passion in life is to spread the knowledge of peace, joy and happiness, that comes being in touch with our own inner selves and secondly, companies like zappos (ecommerce companies) are the ones that I service as part of my portfolio at work. So, when I saw a random link that took me to the book giveaway, I put in my address and within couple of weeks received two copies of the book. Gave one away to Akshay – who hopefully will put up his review on his blog.
As my commitment to post a review on June 7th – and given that I will be away in US on business on the said date – I am writing my thoughts and scheduling this for a June 7th posting.
The book is kind of autobiographical and is split in three parts – part 1 is where Tony focuses on his growing years as an entrepreneur – his first success of building and selling linkexchange, the second and third part of the book is about building Zappos, the challenges, the highs and the lows he and his team faces and finally about the culture, people, mindset and what makes Zappos what it is.
Tony ends the book by the quote from Buddha:
“Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared”
Spiritual principles are quite easy to listen to, but very tough to implement in life. Talking about the path and walking the path are two different things. The brilliant thing about the book is that it takes one to behind the scenes and the thought process involved in building a culture of service. It is not a easy thing to do. The motto of Zappos – “Powered by Service” is what all the Spiritual leaders have talked and demonstrated since Ages. To be able to take that and convert into a working model is absolutely commendable.
Businesses are built by hard work, perseverance and a lot of toil and sacrifices – Tony writes so passionately about his experiences and his staking all his investments and real estate when things were not looking great to invest in Zappos, this self belief and the behind the scene action of moving the logistics operation to Kentucky and then experiencing a disaster and then sticking it out to build things from scratch, makes this book worthwhile reading.
What disappointed me though was that there was hardly any mention of the eCommerce platform on which Zappos runs, the challenges and the experiences would have been a welcome addition to this book.
So, here is my recommendation, my copy is available for giveaway, meanwhile do go out to the bookstore, purchase a copy for yourself and read it. Apart from being a worthwhile addition to your library, this book will set you thinking and if even half of those who read it, start implementing even a tiny bit of changes to make service a way of life, I think Tony has done his job of spreading happiness.
My thanks to the folks at Zappos for giving me the opportunity to get a sneak preview of this book. I am sure sometime in the future I would love to take a visit to Zappos and hopefully get to meet and talk to Tony. [Are you listening, Tony?]