Thomas Huxley once said..."Try to learn something about everything and everything about something."
And that's exactly something that I never want to stop doing--learning. Zappos has been nothing less than the perfect place to contribute to this passion. My brain is constantly cultivated by my daily tasks, the people that inspire me, and the culture that is contagious. It is a fountain of knowledge and you can always count on a variety of paths to pursue. This has been the theme of my journey here at Zappos.
A few years ago, I had decided to uproot myself from the beautiful state of California to move back home to Las Vegas. I was rapidly approaching what twenty-somethings call a "quarter-life crisis" where everything is much more dramatic in your fresh and vulnerable post-grad mind. I was torn between pursuing a legal career or continuing my education to become a speech pathologist. Because both of these routes would require a fair amount of certainty, I decided to take a break.
I needed to consider my options before diving head first into a dream that I was unsure I even wanted to chase. I began applying to a variety of jobs within those two industries of interest, thinking I had it all figured out--until life threw me a curve ball. I was driving on the freeway one afternoon and passed an adopt-a-highway sign that had the name "Zappos" on it. I had heard a lot about this company and knew how much its focus was on customer service. So when I got home that evening, I began to do a little more research on the company. After reading about the 10 core values and watching some of the videos on the culture, I was very impressed. Everyone looked so happy. The same kind of happy you see at Disneyland...but in the workplace. It almost sounded too good to be true.
The next day, I decided to contact the Recruiting Team to get more insight into applying at Zappos. I was amazed at how genuine and speedy the response was compared to the rest of my job search with other companies. Given all of the facts that I had learned about the company core values and the emphasis they place on customer service, I took a leap of faith and decided to apply for a position with the Customer Loyalty Team (CLT). What better way to understand a company than to work within the department that has the closest interactions with its customers?
The CLT department stood out to me as the face and heartbeat of Zappos. Before I knew it, I was taken on an adventure through the recruitment process. I was still in the midst of my interviews with other companies, but something deep down told me that this door was opening up for a reason and was one that I should not ignore. As I continued in the process, I knew more and more that this was a company that I wanted to work for. The stars lined up and I was fortunate enough to earn the job!
My journey at Zappos was off to a start! Little did I know how much my life would begin to change over the next few years. The training process was a great way to dig deep into the company's core values, culture, and history. Our trainers teach every new hire in the company this foundation in addition to the focal point of the company: customer service.
It can be scary to start off a new job not knowing anyone, but with training--I immediately gained 60 new friendships that I would take with me going forward. Once I began my journey with CLT, I learned to appreciate the value of true customer service and putting your customers as the #1 priority. This role taught me the importance of listening and challenged me to creatively think of ways to "wow" our shoppers.
After a few months, I began to grow within my team and learn from the leaders around me about the different ways I could pursue Core Value #5: Pursue Growth and Learning. Having always been a nerd when it comes to number-crunching, I landed a spot with our statistics team. This team gathered data and metrics from our customer-contact channels and would share this volume with the scheduling team in order to properly staff the entire department. The Excel-nerd in me came alive! Working with the numbers helped quantify the bigger story of our company.
A few months later, I continued my quest for knowledge as I joined the Toolbox team. This team helped develop leadership paths for CLT team members who had leadership on their heart. Our team also went on to help pioneer the company's first seasonal employee program in 2012. This role pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped me find an inner drive that I did not know existed. It helped set me on my feet for the next step I would take: joining the Zappos Recruiting team.
Nothing excited me more than being able to help our teams find the best of the best to grow our Zappos family. I joined the team through a Z'Apprenticeship which is an internal internship program that we offer employees to pursue new opportunities with other departments. After working with the team for a few months, I knew I had found my passion! Lucky for me, they liked me too and decided to open up a permanent position for me to grow into the role that I now have as a Recruiting Coordinator for our Zappos family.
Looking back on the last year and a half, I have seen myself grow in so many ways. Bridging communication between our interviewees, hiring teams, and recruiters--I have gotten to know so many incredibly smart and talented individuals. I absolutely love that I can be both an advocate and a friend to our interviewees going through our recruitment process. My role has also taught me so much about understanding all of the little parts that go into running a successful e-commerce website. Today, I still find myself learning so much about the teams that I work with and I have challenged myself not to give up in continuing that knowledge.
You can probably tell that learning is extremely important to me. But I cannot forget to point out that while I pursue this growth and learning...there is another piece that is important to me, and that is the fact that I am surrounded by an amazing family of individuals who are always there to support me. We have our fair share of laughter and tears, we have our luck at bingo, we kick off our boots while line-dancing, we have a little too much fun together at happy hours, we are completely involved in each other's dating lives, we spend 40+ hours a week working with each other and we still want to hang out with each other outside of office hours.
What more can I say? My team is my home away from home. I cannot paint the picture clear enough. I have never worked for a company where I have seen myself challenged so much over the last few years. I have never felt as comfortable in my own skin as I do now. I have never made such a close community of relationships with the coworkers that surround me. The journey has been incredibly wild and the best part is that it only continues from here!