Last month, I wrote two posts explaining what I had learned from reading “Exceptional Service, Exceptional Profit” by Inghilleri and Solomon. In this post, I will do a similar thing with another book I was recommended to read, “Delivering Happiness” by Tony Hsieh.
Related post: Exceptional Service, Exceptional Profit – Part 1
Related post: Exceptional Service, Exceptional Profit – Part 2
Reading these books, I have finally started to articulate my support philosophy on the page “My Support Philosophy“, too. It is still a work-in-progress, but I plan to have this all written up by the time I reapply. (Now, less than two weeks away! ??)
A Path to Profits, Passion and Purpose
by Tony Hsieh (CEO of Zappos.com, Inc.)
Although the author divides the book into three sections, You could also say it contains two halves. The first half is about how the author started out life, about the startup and successful sale of LinkExchange and the lessons the author learned during that time. The latter half give a look into the start and growth of Zappos and the lessons the author learned through that time.
Now, I must admit, I had never heard of LinkExchange or Zappos before reading this book. (Sorry…??) LinkExchange had already been bought by Microsoft when I started to have an interest in computers. As for Zappos, living in Japan and having never traveled to The States, I had never crossed paths with the company. But after reading the book and doing a bit of search online, I can see their uniqueness and why Automattic would want me to read their CEO’s book.
This book talks a lot about company culture. Every company, whether intentional or not, has created its own culture. It could be good or bad, extravagant or subtle, but nonetheless, every company has one. What this author explains, and what I agree to, is that this culture affects every aspect of the company. It will affect the internal environment for employees, it will spill out into the relations it has with other companies it deals with and ultimately it will affect the experience customers have with them.
Having always been on the employed end, I have never given company culture any thought. But this book taught me its value. I can now see why Automattic insists on having a Trial session with all of its hopeful applicants. Automattic has cultivated a company culture it believes best serves its brand, its employees and its customers. While they are seeking individuality amongst potential employees, they would also want someone who naturally fits into the culture they already have.What better way to see if someone is a fit or not by giving them a test run inside the company. Ultimately, if an employee and a company culture are not a good match for each other, then all they will do is wear out on each other.
Customer Service… In The Whole Company
Another thing this book points out is how customer service should not be one department’s job. It should be a fundamental philosophy underlying every department of a company. Even departments that do not directly interact with customers on a daily basis should still understand they are helping the company as a whole to serve customer. Customer satisfaction leads to customer loyalty and that is ultimately what a company is after.
There’s a whole lot more I want to write about this book, but I’ll keep that for another post. For the moment, I have gone and updated my “My Support Philosophy” page. If this post wasn’t long enough for you, then you could checkout that page, too.