Delivering Happiness is the rare book that gives us an inside look at one individual’s journey to find happiness and as a leader in business. Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, has written a thoughtful account of what he has learned from experiences in life, in business and from his studies of the fast growing field of positive psychology.
I highly recommend this book to leaders and others who want to see what an engaging work environment — or “Connection Culture” as I’ve described it in my writings — looks like. Not only will you learn about Hsieh’s thinking, you’ll see how he puts ideas into action.
Hsieh and his colleagues at Zappos have made culture their top priority. In hiring, Zappos has developed a process to identify individuals who have both competence and character that fits a healthy work culture. I could go on and on listing all the great things Zappos does to meet human needs to thrive, but half the fun (and the best way to learn) comes from reading through the book and jotting them down.
Delivering Happiness is also a glimpse at what I believe the workplace of the future will look like. With recent Conference Board research concluding that employee satisfaction is at its lowest point since it began surveying more than 20 years ago, we have a very long way to go.
Finally, Hsieh ultimately draws upon the findings from positive psychology as a basis to guide our individual and collective (including Zappo’s) journeys to find happiness. I came to the same conclusion in my own research. Ultimately, positive psychology promotes the character strengths and virtues celebrated by religious thinkers and moral philosophers throughout the ages. I find this encouraging. As my wise spiritual mentor once told me when I began my research, it all comes back to character. Indeed.
Note: FTC rules require I disclose that I received a free review copy of this book from Zappos.