May 7, 2018 45
Jenn Lim : Delivering Happiness Around The Globe
The CEO & Chief Happiness Officer of Delivering Happiness, Culture Book Creator and Consultant at Zappos; Jenn Lim talks about her successful experiences around building a fulfilling career doing what she loves.
- How did you stumble into the Happiness Movement?
- Well I helped Tony create and launch Delivering Happiness [the book] and from there it took on a life of its own. We had so many people tell us how inspired they were by it and ask how they could implement the frameworks into their organizations… so Delivering Happiness the consultancy sprouted from that need. Since the book, we’ve helped clients around the world create happiness at work and as long as there is a need, we’ll be around to help.
- What is your typical day like?
- Typically my days are…atypical 🙂 Between traveling around the world to do talks and running the company, every day is different which is something I love about my “job.” I get to learn (and hopefully share some knowledge) every day.
- How would you define Happiness, and why is it such an integral part for individual and communities?
- We’ve always based our definition of happiness on science and research, so based on that, happiness comes back to being your authentic (or as we say, “weird”) self, living out your passions and ultimately, being led by your sense of purpose (i.e. doing something bigger than yourself).
- Happiness begins with the individual, but can radiate into a collective group then into a community. The way happiness moves into the world through the flow of first me [you], we, and the community.
- What part of the concept Delivering Happiness did you find most intriguing?
- It’s not so much a concept, because most of the concepts are integral to Delivering Happiness [the consultancy] today. What I loved the most about the book were the employee insights scattered throughout it to further tell the story of how Zappos’ culture came to be. People come to listen to our keynotes, but it’s even better to hear about culture directly from the people living it in their organizations.
- From a best-seller book, to a successful company, what in your of view, made Delivering Happiness a huge success, and how has the journey changed your life?
- Delivering Happiness really addressed the relationship between higher purpose and work in a way that used experience, positive psychology, and the science of happiness. As Tony noted in the preface, he isn’t a professional writer. So I feel like the book’s explanation of these concepts in a simple way really helped people see how happiness could apply to their organizations, their work, and life in general.
- What made you leap into creating the Culture Book for Zappos?
- The Culture Book represented the authentic, unfiltered perspectives of Zappos’ employees and its purpose was to give the company an idea of where their current culture was at. Most of the input was positive but some were negative or delivered criticism that needed to be heard. Your employees are the direct recipients and creators of your culture, so why not hear what they think?
- The culture book that you created for Zappos is now on its 7th edition. Did you see this coming?
- Not at the time we published the first one. Looking back at it, the 1st edition looked pretty scrappy! But then we saw the impact it made for employees, then eventually customers and anyone in the world that was interested in reading it. What started as The Culture Book ended up being Zappos’ brand book. What was also unexpected is how big it’s gotten and how many other organizations are creating their own culture books. We just got a copy of a culture book from one of our clients in Turkey [Canpa], and it’s great to see how it has become a part of their tradition too.
- What are the key points to keep in mind when dealing with employees from different age groups?
- One important thing to keep in mind… higher purpose and meaning transcend the boundaries of age. You can be any age [18 or 55, it doesn’t matter] and you’ll still have an innate desire to engage in meaningful and fulfilling work. Of course their priorities in life may be different, but the DH model for creating happiness at work applies across age groups.
- You have such a hectic schedule with travelling around the globe. How do you maintain your own happiness? Any particular ritual you follow or anything special you do?
- I make time for my friends and family, and if I have a chance to bring them with me we do it together so I can create some memorable experiences with them. Typically, especially on my flights, you’ll see me scroll through some photos of them as a way for me to reminisce on happy moments with them.
- Has helping people build happiness in their lives, affected your own happiness? How?
- Nothing really beats having someone else light up about our happiness model and how it changed their lives and the lives of their employees. It really affirms how our work is creating a sustainable impact.
- What advice do you have for start-ups to build happiness in their team?
- Talk to your team to get a better idea of what your current culture is like, then get together to create your core values, and live by them. You can also find some great resources on our website to get an idea of how to start.
- What are your future plans of Delivering Happiness?
- We’ve got some great things coming down the pipe for DH that I think our book fans will also love to be a part of – a much bigger focus on our me, we, community model. So far we’re just asking people to follow us on social media for those updates, so stay tuned!