If Zappos can do this, why can’t the rest of us?

Last December I spent three amazing days – no joke – with a farmer, doughnut maker, author, apron entrepreneur, musician and academic, to name a few. And one particularly sharp internal communicator. (And yes, on more than one occasion, we walked into a bar together.) We participated in “Creativ Week,” a monthly experience for leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs to explore important social topics and learn more about theDowntown Project, an urban revitalization effort in downtown Las Vegas. Sponsored by Delivering Happiness, our theme was “Giving Forward: Sustainable Generosity and the new ROI (or Ripple of Impact).” We held meetings throughout downtown Las Vegas and a common discussion was company culture, particularly since Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh founded both the Downtown Project and Delivering Happiness. If you’ve read Hsieh’s book, Delivering Happiness, you know he believes that company culture is the number one driver of business success. It’s a pretty simple formula: Happy employees = happy customers = more sales. So, for a culture geek like me, one of the highlights of the week was a tour of the Zappos headquarters. (By the way, anyone can schedule a tour if you’re in the area; it’s even reviewed on Yelp.) Through my internal comms lens, I noticed a few things about Zappos employees: They have a sense of humor. We were greeted by Zappos “mayor” Jerry Tidmore who checked us in. Behind him, I noticed a wall of business ties, all cut in half. Jerry explained that, if anyone comes in for an interview wearing a tie, they offer to cut it off and put it on the “wall of ties.”...