Full disclosure, I was never really interested in the Zappos.com story. I got what Zappos was, but until Amazon forked over $1.2 billion for the company I really didn’t understand the scale that it had gotten to. Obviously, it was pretty freaking big.
And I had seen their CEO, Tony Hsieh (pronounced “shay”), on Celebrity Apprentice and I’ve seen his tweets, but I was never really that impressed. Boy, should I have been. Guy is awesome.
I’m not sure why I downloaded the book, Delivering Happiness, but once I started reading it I couldn’t put it down. Finished it in 2 days. Couldn’t put it down and considering I read it on the iPad where there are a million distractions built right in, that’s an impressive feat in my book.
First and foremost, it’s a phenomenal book for anyone involved in startups. Tony’s story of founding LinkExchange (which he eventually sold to Microsoft for $250 million) and then funding and ultimately running Zappos is a great story for anyone that has either started a company or wants to. Truly inspirational.
While the name is actually a great title for the book, it doesn’t scream “must read startup book” like, say, Founders at Work does. At the end of Tony’s journey he realizes that his purpose, and that of Zappos, is to deliver happiness to the world. A little hokey for my taste but the guy is living it and all evidence points to that being a rallying cry that has lead him to being extremely successful. But it takes him over 10 years to get to that realization and the journey is worth reading.
And if you’ve already read it, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.