May 8, 2020

Knowledge Nuggets: Delivering Happiness

May 8, 2020

Knowledge Nuggets: Delivering Happiness

Business Strategy, Ashton Bishop, Knowledge Nuggets

According to Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, the key to running a successful business is happiness. By developing happiness habits, embracing a happy work-life, and prioritising your customer's happiness, Tony believes businesses can succeed. For this week’s Knowledge Nuggets, let’s explore the book Delivering Happiness and learn to live lives full of purpose, passion, and profits. 

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Insight: Organisations that develop a culture of happiness and purpose have a greater chance of success.

Data: Happy employees experience 31% higher productivity. (

What’s the step change: Develop a company culture of happiness and achieve overall success. Download Knowledge Nuggets: Delivering Happiness today.


Delivering Happiness is predominantly about Tony Hsieh’s journey to business success. Growing up in a family of high achievers, his life had been mapped out for him. 

His mother wanted him to go to a prestigious university and become a doctor. However Tony had other plans. He did go to a prestigious university (he went to Harvard) but upon graduation, with a Bachelor’s degree in computer science, he forged his own path. 

After a career spanning almost three decades, during which he grew successful companies such as LinkExchange and Zappos. He was also responsible for brokering million-dollar deals. And throughout the years, he has observed how happiness plays a key role in a company’s success. 

The Three Types of Happiness

There are 3 types of happiness and each has an effect on our everyday lives.

  1. Pleasure: This aspect of happiness is technically short-lived. It is the happiness we feel when we thoroughly enjoy something. 
  2. Passion: The passionate aspect of happiness is the driving force behind many great endeavours. This aspect of happiness can give you a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment.
  3. Purpose: A life without purpose is an unhappy one. You feel aimless and restless. When you have a purpose in life, you are focused and confident. 

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The key principles within Delivering Happiness are as follows.

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1. Sit Down at the Right Table

Tony is an avid poker player and says “In poker, it does not matter how good you are. What matters is how good you are on the table you are sitting down at.”

One of Tony’s keys to success is that he was very good at selecting the right product category at the right time. He considered it more important to be passionate about one thing than to have a lukewarm interest in a dozen other things. 

2. Power Your Purpose

Culture is an integral part of being human. Culture is the characteristics of a specific group of people, and it encompasses key aspects such as religion, language, music and the arts. Organisations also have their individual cultures. According to Tony, culture is the key to business success. 

While rapid growth in employees can be a good thing, it can also be counterproductive if you hire the wrong people. Your team should be composed of employees who believe in the company vision. Don’t employ people who are just in it for the money. Employ people who care about the ultimate goal. 

3. Bring It Back to Customers

Customer happiness has always been a core principle of Tony’s business strategy. He knows that good customer interaction is a key aspect of running a successful business. If you make the customer a priority, then you will create a lasting impression and build up an emotional bank account which you may need to draw on later in the relationship.

4. Work the Formula of Happiness

A company should be more than just a money-making machine. It should enrich and educate both customers and employees. Companies must constantly strive to learn and evolve. 

Learning at a faster rate than your competition. Tony believes in building a culture of learning and growth in his company. Employees need to feel that they are part of something worthwhile. Whenever possible, include them in your decision making.  Allow your employees to feel like they are in control of their own destinies. And as your company grows, show them the progress that they have helped achieve.

Tony is a genius when it comes to business strategy and team cohesion. And he achieved this through tried and tested methods that make running a company a joy to behold. By utilising his teachings, you stand a greater chance of achieving success in not only your business but other aspects of life as well. 

Image credit: Pinterest

Download our Knowledge Nugget on Delivering Happiness.



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