I know, I know – this post is about zappos and that means everyone reading has to drink. It is almost a cliché that when you talk about how to engage employees and create a workplace people want to be that you have to include zappos or the engagement police will slap you with fish. I’m not sure even google can keep up with the number of posts and tweets and updates and articles about zappos and what they do to create an engaged and productive workforce.
But gosh darn it, when a company does something right you have to talk about it. And zappos does a lot of things right.
Sticking with the fish meme, I’ve heard the saying “If wishes were fishes we’d all cast nets.” The implication is that we all have wishes – and we all want to see our wishes fulfilled. But hey, this is the real world and we all know that we “can’t always get what we want, but we get what we need.”
Unless you work at zappos (drink!)
This is not news for a lot of you but it is to me.
Zappos has a program that allows their employees to make wishes – and here’s the really cool part – the allow the employees to FULFILL them! This concept hearkens to the post our President and founder had the other day about employee capacity and how we can help our employees create capacity and help them find ways to use that capacity to help others.
In this case – the object of that capacity stays within the organization.
Here’s a video (subscribers may need to click through to watch it) where zappos employees talk about their Family Wishez Program…
I don’t think I have to go on and wax poetic for another 500 words to explain how enabling your employees to help each other – even if somewhat silly (hot dates anyone?) is a good idea. Research has shown that simply helping another human being increases our dopamine levels making us feel good and is actually as beneficial to our “happiness” and motivation as earning an award for ourselves.
The technology to implement this in your own organization is easy and readily available. In fact, I’m sure you could make creating your own Wishez network your first wish and some enterprising group of employees will make it happen in hot minute.
Sometimes you just need to close your eyes and click your heels together three times to get what you really need.
NOTE: One thing concerns me is that the blog posts on this program on the zappos site doesn’t seem to be getting updated – last post was at the beginin of 2011. I hope this is because they’re too busy and not because it has fallen out of favor. Anyone in blogosphere know? Is it still going? It should – it is a great idea!