Tony Hsieh- $265 Million Didn’t Make Me Happy But Pickles Did!

Tony Hsieh

by Jatinder Singh, Associate Partner, Lighthouse International

“I made a list of the happiest periods in my life, and I realized that none of them involved money. I realized that building stuff and being creative and inventive made me happy. Connecting with a friend and talking through the entire night until the sun rose made me happy. Trick-or-treating in middle school with a group of my closest friends made me happy. Eating a baked potato after a swim meet made me happy. Pickles made me happy.”

- Tony Hsieh - Delivering Happiness

How many of us have thought "If only I had enough money then I would be happy?" Well, would $265 Million be enough? Today we have a powerful lesson from Tony Hsieh (pronounced "Shay"), CEO of Zappos, the billion-dollar online shoe retailer that proves otherwise.

While money and building wealth is crucially important to living a fulfilling life, there are other factors which lead to happiness...

Tony Hsieh sold an Internet Advertising company (LinkExchange) to Microsoft in 1998 for $265 Million, which he started only two years earlier! Not bad for a few years' work eh?

Except as I am sure you are realising by now with legends, things are never quite what they seem. Below is a link to an extract from Mr Hsieh's book called Delivering Happiness. In it, Tony talks about how he realised that happiness comes from having a higher purpose and creating a caring work culture for employees and not making money! He started to realise that all the best and most fulfilling experiences of his life involved people he cared about and enjoyed spending time with. This lead him to build Zappos, the billion dollar shoe company known for its great culture and excellent customer service.

Here’s the extract from the book where he shares his realisations...

What makes you happy? Did you think money would make you happy at one point in your life? Share in the comments below...

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Tony Hsieh image courtesy of Nan Palmero @ Flickr