Would Your Employees Quit for $1,000?

Zappos, the online shoe company that has become so much more than a shoe company, is known everywhere as the customer service company. They don’t just serve customers, they try to dramatically stun them. And that, more than anything else, is the core of their business. At this point, it doesn’t matter what Zappos sells.
The company could do anything and succeed. Their profits have jumped from $70 million five years ago to an estimated $1 billion this year. Zappos has created this explosive success by first cultivating employees that are fanatical about Zappos. You can’t provide excellent service to customers without first having engaged employees.
How do they do it? A Harvard Business Review blog post examines one facet of Zappos culture that is part of creating an engaged workforce. It’s “one small practice that offers big lessons for leaders who are serious about… filling their organization with people who are just as committed as they are.”
Here’s the one small practice: after a new hire’s first week of intensive work at Zappos, the new employee is offered full salary for that one week plus a $1,000 bonus to quit and walk away from the job.
The Zappos mentality? If the new employee takes the offer, good riddance. Zappos wants commitment, excitement about the job, and employees that want to work for Zappos more than they want an immediate $1,000.
If an employee will stay despite a monetary offer to quit, it’s a good sign that they’ll be engaged. Zappos has learned that engaged employees are better at serving customers. And when serving customers is the core of your business, it’s a pretty good idea to have employees that are good at it.
Would your employees quit the job if you offered them $1000 to do it? What does that say about your company? About the design of their position? About the employee engagement level in your organization? How do you make sure your employees are committed to the business?
Related Post: Employee Engagement Lessons from the Fortune “100 Best Companies to Work For”: Zappos.com
Related Post: How do You Screen New Hires for Employee Engagement?

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