Former Zappos Coach: “Manage things, not people.”


VentureBeat ran a transcript of their interview with former Zappos culture coach – and current CEO at The Culture King – David Vik. According to Vik, ‘culture’ is what built Zappos into the Internet’s largest shoe source – and leadership can ruin culture by “managing people,” when they should be “managing things.”

Vik breaks down culture into the following assets:

–          Vision: What you’re doing

–          Purpose: Why you do it

–          Business Model: What will fuel you as you’re doing it

–          Wow and uniqueness factors: What sets you apart from others

–          Values: What matters to you

Vik also suggestions formulating a short, memorable mission statement encapsulating the ‘vision’ and ‘purpose’ of your venture.

So just what kind of culture did Vik install at Zappos? His office used to have a throne, which visitors were invited to sit in, and he helped develop the company’s 500-page ‘culture book.’

Culture, it appears, takes a lot of hard work.