Tony Hsieh, founder of shoes marketplace Zappos and the author of Delivering Happiness, passed away last week. He was 46 years old, much too young to leave this world.
Reading the news on twitter, cant help but feeling sad and sentimental. Never knew the guy, but the book Delivering Happiness was the first business book that ive bought. The book opened new horizon for me on startups and business management in general.
For context, i bought the book back in 2012. I was a software engineer in Telco back then and always thought working in technical fields will be my future. However, Tony’s book was written in a very enjoyable way that a non-business guys like me can digest.
In this post, i write couple of interesting lesson in the book that still goes with me until now. This is my way of celebrating Tony’s life. And if you havent read his book, hopefully this will intrigue you to start reading.
I am currently reading Tony Hsieh’s Delivering Happiness for the second time. Bought it years ago and it has been gathering dust in my cubicle. Decided to pick it up again after i finished reading The Everything Store.It is a very good book about chronicles of Jeff Bezos and Amazon. Zappos was mentioned several times and makes me want to reread Tony’s book again.
Surprisingly, i found a lot of things in the book that i didnt catch at the first read through. Knowledge bits about ecommerce, startup and company culture which im pretty sure never knew it beforehand. As if im reading a completely new book.
Im quite positive this is not symptom of Alzheimer, so how can this happened ? Several seconds later, a realization hits me in the head.
I bought the book somewhere in 2011. At that time, i just made a career move from IT ( which i lived and breathe since college) and to a whole new territory of Corporate Strategy. Business and marketing was a strange thing to me, let alone stuff like venture capital, startup and company culture. Within that context, my takeaway in the first read through of this book were : Tony Hsieh seems like a great guy to have a drink with and Zappos is a peculiar company who obsessed with customer service.
Fast forward to now, Ive learned quite a lot about the related topic in Delivering Happiness book. Ive digested several books related to tech startup such as Zero To Oneby Peter Thiel and The Launchpad by Randal Stross. Binge-watch the whole season of Sam Altman’s How To Start a Startup . Ive also involved in the initial development of Elevenia which taught me a lot about e-commerce and it was one of the most exciting projects ive ever worked.
This is why the second read through of the same book give me different experience. I have a neccesary knowledge to reveal information which i didnt get before
Great books are awesome like that. It has layer and layer of knowledge which makes it not enough to just read it once.
When I was a child I ate a lot of food. Most of it is long gone and forgotten, but certainly some of it became my very bones and flesh. Think of reading as the same thing for the mind .