100+ Legendary Tony Hsieh Quotes On Culture, Hard Work & Success

100+ Legendary Tony Hsieh Quotes On Culture, Hard Work & Success

Tony Hsieh was an American venture capitalist and Internet entrepreneur.

He served as CEO of the online shoe and clothing company Zappos for 21 years.

He also co-founded LinkExchange, the Internet advertising network he sold to Microsoft for $265 million in 1998.

We've put together an incredible collection of Tony Hsieh quotes to read.

Here they are:

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List of Inspiring Tony Hsieh Quotes

“The combination of physical synchrony with other humans and being part of something bigger than oneself (and thus losing momentarily a sense of self) leads to a greater sense of happiness.” ― Tony Hsieh


“We must never lose our sense of urgency in making improvements. We must never settle for “good enough,” because good is the enemy of great,” ― Tony Hsieh


“Open, honest communication is the best foundation for any relationship.” ― Tony Hsieh


“There’s a big difference between motivation and inspiration: Inspire through values and motivation takes care of itself.” ― Tony Hsieh


“For individuals, character is destiny. For organizations, culture is destiny.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Open, honest communication is the best foundation for any relationship, but remember that at the end of the day it’s not what you say or what you do, but how you make people feel that matters the most.” ― Tony Hsieh


“It’s important to constantly challenge and stretch yourself, and not be stuck in a job where you don’t feel like you are growing or learning.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Every employee can affect your company’s brand, not just the front-line employees that are paid to talk to your customers.” ― Tony Hsieh


“We must all learn not only to not fear change, but to embrace it enthusiastically and, perhaps even more important, encourage and drive it.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Don’t be cocky. Don’t be flashy. There’s always someone better than you.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I had decided to stop chasing the money, and start chasing the passion.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The ultimate definition of success is: You could lose everything that you have and truly be okay with it. Your happiness isn’t based on external factors.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Your personal core values define who you are, and a company’s core values ultimately define the company’s character and brand.” ― Tony Hsieh


“There’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.” ― Tony Hsieh


“For me, my role is about unleashing what people already have inside them that is maybe suppressed in most work environments.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Chase the vision, not the money, the money will end up following you.” ― Tony Hsieh


“My advice is to stop trying to "network" in the traditional business sense, and instead just try to build up the number and depth of your friendships, where the friendship itself is its own reward. The more diverse your set of friendships are, the more likely you'll derive both personal and business benefits from your friendship later down the road. You won't know exactly what those benefits will be, but if your friendships are genuine, those benefits will magically appear 2-3 years later down the road.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Never outsource your core competency.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Having a higher purpose is more than just about profits. You actually end up making more profits in the long run because employees really are a lot more engaged and customers see the higher purpose in the company.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Branding Through Customer Service Over the years, the number one driver of our growth at Zappos has been repeat customers and word of mouth. Our philosophy has been to take most of the money we would have spent on paid advertising and invest it into customer service and the customer experience instead, letting our customers do the marketing for us through word of mouth.” ― Tony Hsieh


“To never forget that the most important thing in life is the quality of life we lead.” ― Tony Hsieh


“What’s the best way to build a brand for the long term? In a word: culture.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The best businesses are really ones that can combine passion, profits, and purpose.” ― Tony Hsieh


“People may not remember exactly what you did or what you said but they always remember how you made them feel, that’s what matters the most.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Zappos is a customer service company that just happens to sell shoes.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Without conscious effort, inertia always wins.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The ultimate definition of success is: you could lose everything that you have and truly be okay with it. Your happiness isn’t based on external factors.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Our business is based on repeat customers and word of mouth. There’s a lot of value in building up our brand name and what it stands for. We view the money that we spend on customer service as marketing money that improves our brand.” ― Tony Hsieh


“A bigger business is like a cruise ship: There are lots of amenities and you can go a lot further, but it’s harder to turn quickly.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Never accept or be too comfortable with the status quo, because the companies that get into trouble are historically the ones that aren’t able to adapt to change and respond quickly enough.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Don’t play games that you don’t understand, even if you see lots of other people making money from them.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I think the most important thing is just if you hire people whose personal values match the corporate core values – and not just the stated ones.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Good businesses generate missions to drive their profits. Great businesses generate profits to drive their missions.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Customer service shouldn’t just be A department, it should be the entire company.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Happiness is really just about four things: perceived control, perceived progress, connectedness (number and depth of your relationships), and vision/meaning (being part of something bigger than yourself).” ― Tony Hsieh


“I thought about how easily we are all brainwashed by our society and culture to stop thinking and just assume by default that more money equals more success and more happiness when ultimately happiness is really just about enjoying life.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I believe that there’s something interesting about anyone and everyone – you just have to figure out what that something is.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Get the culture right, and everything else just falls into place.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Customer service shouldn’t be a department, it should be the entire company.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Act weak when strong, act strong when weak. Know when to bluff.” ― Tony Hsieh


“We decided that if we get the culture right, most of the stuff, like building a brand around delivering the very best customer service, will just take care of itself.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Envision, create, and believe in your own universe, and the universe will form around you.” ― Tony Hsieh


“No matter what your past has been, you have a spotless future.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Things are never as bad or as good as they seem.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Learn by doing. Theory is nice but nothing replaces actual experience.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Have fun. The game is a lot more enjoyable when you’re trying to do more than just make money.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Good service comes naturally from satisfied employees who embraced the company culture.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Our philosophy is about delivering happiness to our customers and employees.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Your culture is your brand.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Business is all about learning to balance the short-term, medium-term and long-term and I think it’s when things are going well it covers up a lot of mistakes and bad decisions because you’re growing so quickly...” ― Tony Hsieh


“Your personal core values define who you are, and a company's core values ultimately define the company's character and brand. For individuals, character is destiny. For organizations, culture is destiny.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I think the most important thing is you hire people whose personal values match the corporate core values – and not just the stated ones.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Help shape the stories that people are telling about you.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Your culture is your brand.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The best businesses are really ones that can combine passion, profits, and purpose.” ― Tony Hsieh


“In business you must do something that’s above and beyond what’s expected.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Just figure out what your personal values are then just make those the corporate values.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Chase the vision, not the money. The money will end up following you.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Our belief is that if you get the culture right, most of the other stuff, like great customer service, or building a great long-term brand or empowering passionate employees and customers, will happen on its own.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I view my role more as trying to set up an environment where personalities, creativity, and individuality of all the different employees come our and can shine.” ― Tony Hsieh


“For me, the most fun is change or growth. There are definitely elements of both that I like. Launching a business is kind of like a motorboat: You can go very quickly and turn fast.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The problem when someone feels burned out, bored, unchallenged, or stifled by their work is not the job itself but rather the environment and playground rules given to them to do the job at hand.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The best leaders are servant leaders – they serve those they lead.” ― Tony Hsieh


“It’s more important that we make an emotional connection with the customer.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Problems are just mile markers. Each one we pass means we’ve gotten better.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Have fun. The game is a lot more enjoyable when you’re trying to do more than just make money.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Never accept or be too comfortable with the status quo, because the companies that get into trouble are historically the ones that aren’t able to adapt to change and respond quickly enough.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The best leaders are those that lead by example and are both team followers as well as team leaders. We believe that in general, the best ideas and decisions are made from the bottom up, meaning by those on the front lines that are closest to the issues and/or the customers. The role of a manager is to remove obstacles and enable his/her direct reports to succeed. This means the best leaders are servant-leaders. They serve those they lead.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I view my role more as trying to set up an environment where the personalities, creativity and individuality of all the different employees come out and can shine.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I’d rather spend money on things that improve the customer experience than on marketing.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I thought about how easily we are all brainwashed by our society and culture to stop thinking and just assume by default that more money equals more success and more happiness, when ultimately happiness is really just about enjoying life.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Our belief is that if you get the culture right, most of the other stuff, like great customer service or building a great long-term brand or empowering passionate employees and customers will happen on its own.” ― Tony Hsieh


“A great brand is a story that never stops unfolding.” ― Tony Hsieh


“I’d rather spend money on things that improve the customer experience than on marketing.” ― Tony Hsieh


“all brainwashed by our society and culture to stop thinking and just assume by default that more money equals more success and more happiness, when ultimately happiness is really just about enjoying life. I” ― Tony Hsieh


“Every employee can affect your company’s brand, not just the front-line employees.” ― Tony Hsieh


“The brand is just a lagging indicator of a company’s culture.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Money alone isn't enough to bring happiness . . . happiness [is] when you're actually truly ok with losing everything you have.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Without conscious and deliberate effort, inertia always wins” ― Tony Hsieh


“A bigger business is like a cruise ship: There are lots of amenities and you can go a lot further but it’s harder to turn quickly.” ― Tony Hsieh


“For individuals, character is destiny. For organizations, culture is destiny. ” ― Tony Hsieh


“It doesn’t cost anything to say hi when you pass someone else in the hallway, whereas, most corporations if you pass you avoid eye contact.” ― Tony Hsieh


“To WOW, you must differentiate yourself, which means do something a little unconventional and innovative. You must do something that’s above and beyond what’s expected. And whatever you do must have an emotional impact on the receiver.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Learn by doing. Theory is nice, but nothing replaces actual experience.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Zappos is a customer service company that just happens to sell shoes.” ― Tony Hsieh


“It’s important to constantly challenge and stretch yourself, and not be stuck in a job where you don’t feel like you are growing or learning.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Most companies are very quick to hire and slow to fire, when really it should be the other way around.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Whatever you’re thinking, think bigger.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Zappos uses call center technology to track average call time per agent. But the goal isn’t to reduce this average – it’s more important that we make an emotional connection with the customer, rather than just quickly getting them off the phone.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Most innovation comes from outside your industry applied to your own.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Without conscious and deliberate effort, inertia always wins.” ― Tony Hsieh


“We asked ourselves what we wanted this company to stand for. We didn’t want to just sell shoes. I wasn’t even into shoes – but I was passionate about customer service.” ― Tony Hsieh


“There’s a big difference between motivation and inspiration: Inspire through values and motivation takes care of itself.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Don’t play the games that you don’t understand, even if you see lots of other people making money from them.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Your brand is your culture.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Whatever you’re thinking, think bigger.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Businesses often forget about the culture, and ultimately, they suffer for it because you can’t deliver good service from unhappy employees.” ― Tony Hsieh


“Don’t be cocky. Don’t be flashy. There’s always someone better than you.” ― Tony Hsieh


Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story

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