The concept of transparency in an organization has grown tremendously as a marketing approach. Of course, every organization has their reason for being transparent or not being transparent. However, we researched Zappos and this is the backstory we would like to share with you.
The founder of Zappos is Nick Swinmurn and he established the company in San Francisco, California. He came up with the idea as he was looking for new shoes in the mall. He went home empty-handed because all the shoes were either the right color and wrong size or the wrong size and right color. He started to do some online research and came to the consensus that there were very minimal opportunities to purchase shoes online. In 1999 Swinmurn quit his day job to start an online retailer called Zappos.
Zappos was different from other companies because their idea was to create a website that offered the best and most options in terms of brands, styles, colors, sizes, and widths. He created the foundation that he wanted to provide the best service online for not just shoes but every category. Zappos is a Holocracy as opposed to a Hierarchy. In a Holocracy, there are not any managerial positions, so all employees are treated equally.
In addition, Zappos focuses on these 10 main values with an emphasis on brand, business and culture:
- 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
Zappos values customer service because being a transparent company is very important to them. Furthermore, they define the majority of their brand as customer service and want to be well-known for a pleasant retail experience. As a way to provide great service, they have a 24/7 customer call service and live chat device.
Between Zappos pristine customer service, employee benefits, and core value focus, the organization remains very transparent.