Play and fun have served Zappos well. Undoubtedly, fun holds the rich and highly collaborative Zappos culture together. But let’s face it, if Zappos were dedicated only to fun, the company would not be thriving today. The genius of Zappos leaders is the way they blend the fun into the work. The visionary leadership at Zappos understands that work made fun gets done. Moreover, work made fun creates energized, happy, and cohesive teams.

Although I’m saving most of the specific payoffs Zappos enjoys from creating a culture of play and family connectedness until Chapter 11, generally speaking the overarching benefits for Zappos are very consistent with the positive correlations researchers have found. For example, management professor ...

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