Employee Engagement Lessons from the Fortune "100 Best Companies to Work For": Zappos.com

Each year Fortune Magazine releases a list of “100 Best Companies to Work For.” We love to browse through the winners and note the practices that make them a company worth imitating.
Over the next few weeks, we will highlight a few of the top 100 companies and their key engagement practices. Today we’ll turn the attention to Zappos.com, who jumped to number 6 on the list this year from number 15 last year. (We’ve spotlighted them once before, read here.)

Company Spotlight:   #6   Zappos.com

Zappos is committed to a single goal: customer service that WOW’s. WOW is the Zappos word-of-the-day, everyday. Their focus on delivering WOW to customers and always being employees that WOW, generates truly remarkable customer service. Through interactions with people internally and externally, the “Zappos family” (as they call themselves) always strives to generate that single-word response, WOW.
With 10 company values, Zappos promotes a unified company culture that is fun, and just a little bit weird (#3 is “Create Fun and a Little Weirdness”). With wild decorations dangling from the ceiling rafters and tie-dye infused family picnics, Zappos creates happy employees who are encouraged to be innovative and entertaining (think random Oreo Art Contests and Pinewood Derby Races). In this way, Zappos generates productivity and effectiveness from engaged employees, not to mention customer service that WOW’s.
Zappos employees enjoy free lunches, $0.25 vending machines whose profits are donated to the Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation, a full-time life coach on hand, and creative celebrations for every holiday and non-holiday alike.
Although this type of culture may not work at your typical law firm, these practices clearly create a unique work experience that attracts top talent and engaged employees.
Do you think that Zappos has gone too far?  Would some of their practices work in your organization?

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