Social Intelligence in Zappos

A good example of companies practicing Social Intelligence is Zappos, an online shoe and footwear apparel shopping site. As Tony Hsieh, the CEO of would tell you, “If you get the culture right, then most of the other stuff, like great customer service or building a brand will just happen naturally.” The company has internalized ten core values that they say, define the working culture at

Interestingly, it’s not the CEO, but the employees themselves who decide what the company’s culture should be and how it should evolve. The managers at strive constantly to deliver a working environment for their employees that gives them ample freedom and space. According to Hsieh, the company selects candidates for jobs based on how much they can formalize the company’s culture. He says, “We’ve actually passed on a lot of really talented people that we know would make an impact to our top or bottom line, but if you know they’re not a culture fit we won’t hire them.”

There are cases of people working with who were fired even if they were doing their jobs perfectly if they were found to have not worked as per the company’s culture. The company’s ten core values are seen in effect in everything the company does. Likewise, he explains the company will fire people even if they’re doing their job perfectly if they’re bad for the culture.

Zappos Family has ten core values to more clearly define what exactly the Zappos Family culture is. They are −

●      Deliver Wow through Service

●      Embrace and Drive Change

●      Create Fun and a Little Weirdness

●      Be Adventurous, Creative, and Open-Minded

●      Pursue Growth and Learning

●      Build Open and Honest Relationships with Communication

●      Build a Positive Team and Family Spirit

●      Do More with Less

●      Be Passionate and Determined

●      Be Humble

If you observe closely, you will realize that the qualities the people at are actually formalizing in their company are all those that enhance a person’s Social Intelligence. The reason this is so important in their organization is because they have seen that people with a well-developed EQ are more successful at the workplace.

People with high social intelligence understand the emotions of other people and are also able to control their own emotional responses to these situations. They can know why people behave the way they do. They understand different points of view and know how to respond to conflicting situations with calmness and composure. These qualities make a person an ideal employee and this why people who compete for jobs realize that social intelligence cannot be taken for granted. It brings balance and a sense of perspective in one’s life and thus, is very essential to the growth of individuals.

Social Intelligence in Zappos

What would be the benefit of improving the social intelligence of employees in an organization? Sample this. After integrating a six-month training process called “Emotional Intelligence for New Managers” to their training program, FedEx reported an 8-11% increase in core leadership competencies. Over half the participants have shown very large (10-50%) improvements in their emotional intelligence skills, like leadership abilities. 72% of the program participants are exhibiting tremendous improvement in their decision making skills, over 60% report a better quality of life and 58% show much-improved decision-making skills.

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