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Super Awesome Description Winner-October 2011

The Super Awesome Description award is a way of recognizing a member of the Zappos Development content team once a month. If a product description is particularly witty or creative, anyone in the company can nominate the person who wrote it.  The nominations are then read by other members of the content department and voted upon; the description with the most votes wins. The writer of that description is rewarded with a trophy and a certificate, not to mention recognition from their peers.

The winner for October is Chris G. Chris is part of the Casual Lifestyle team, and his riveting account of the OXO® Adjustable Drawer Organizer left no doubt why this was a very winning description. Congrats, Chris!

We asked Chris a few fun questions to get to know him better. Check out his answers below!

What inspired you when writing this description?

I got “crazy Uncle Mike” from “Another Irish Drinking Song” by DaVinci’s Notebook. (Good stuff, but listen with your headphones on.) I found out about DaVinci’s Notebook by listening to Pandora while writing descriptions!

What is your favorite Zappos core value and why?

Tutu Tuesday! No, wait…
You’d think it’d be number three, but I really like number two the best. I’ve worked for too many companies who say “That’s the way we do things,” and never try anything new. Zappos is up for anything.

What's a fact people would be surprised to learn about you?

The alternate universe version of me is an accountant.

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Zapponian Spotlight: Gonzo

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This week’s Zapponian Spotlight might look familiar to you, and for good reason. Christopher, better known as Gonzo, has graced quite a few of our funny Zappos TV videos. He works for our awesome AV team as our in-house culture videographer, which means Gonzo has one of the coolest jobs around: capturing Zappos Culture on video!

Gonzo is originally from Puerto Rico and has been making skate films for about eight years. He’s currently working on his third feature-length skate film.

We asked him the usual ZS questions, and here are his answers:

Pick 3 words to describe your personal style.

G: Gnar (short for gnarly), Steeze and shred

Who is your favorite musician or band?

G: Can’t narrow this to one down, so I'll go with Sublime, Jay-Z (first 8 albums), Pixies, Ludacris, Dead Kennedys, Black Flag, and Eminem.

Name 3 things you never leave home without?

G: Skateboard, sunglasses and iPod

If you could have dinner with one famous person, who would it be?

G: Rosario Dawson so I can see if I stand a chance!

What’s the weirdest thing to ever happen to you?

G: When I found out that PBR (Pabst Blue Ribbon) is actually the hipsters’ beer of choice. Weird.

What’s your favorite part about working at Zappos HQ?

G: Other than the free iced tea, I would have to say the people here. I love em!! They are literally like family to me. Oh, and that I can skate around in the parking lot!

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Zappos Family Adoption Benefits

It’s no secret that we have some amazing benefits as being part of the Zappos Family. From free health insurance, to wellness fairs and workshops, our Benefits team definitely takes great care of all of us!

But did you know that we also have an added adoption benefit? Zappos.com has recently earned a spot on the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption’s 2011 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces List, due to the great adoption reimbursement benefit we are offered.

Many adoption-related costs, such as attorney fees, application fees, travel and adoption counseling, are eligible for a $6,000 reimbursement under this amazing benefit.

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Baby Theo, Dwight and family

Dwight J., one of our Zappos Kentucky Family members, recently added a new member to his family by way of adoption. We decided to ask him a couple of questions about his experience, and how the adoption benefits played a role in the process of finding their new baby boy.

How long ago did your adoption journey begin?

D: We started our journey about 2 years ago and in between that time we had experienced 2 failed adoptions. 

What deciding factors led you to choose adoption?

D: We always knew that we would eventually adopt, since there are so many children out there that need good homes.

When you finally met your son Theodore, what was that moment like?

D: It was absolutely the most joyous moment of our lives. Theodore almost didn't make it through the birth, so it was also an extremely intense ride, too. Here was this little 5 pound 13 ounce human being that I was going to help raise into a man. That is a pretty awesome feeling.

In what ways did the company benefit towards adoption help you in the whole process?

D: Those who have gone through the adoption process know about how expensive it can be. Any, I mean any help that you receive financially is a huge bonus. This benefit allowed us to pay some of the legal fees and travel fees during the time of the adoption. We are very fortunate to have this benefit at Zappos, and not many employers offer it.

What’s your favorite part about being a new dad to your son?

D: Wow, where to start? I love seeing the development process each and every day. No matter how bad your day may be, when you come home and see your son and his smile, it just makes everything else go away. I like to shop for him as well; he has a nice tennis shoe collection already! More importantly, the best part is being able to share this experience with my wife, Rebecca, and also our friends and family who have been with us and supported us throughout this entire journey.

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Zapponian Spotlight: Lyndsey A.

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This week’s Zapponian Spotlight is on Lyndsey A., one of our awesome recruiters for the Zappos HR team. This San Jose native and ASU grad loves her three dogs (Bella, Maddie and Jackson) great restaurants, finding good happy hours and enjoys a good dive bar. In fact, she even met her husband at a dive bar!

Read on to learn more this Sun Devils alumni!

Pick 3 words to describe your personal style.

L: Feminine, Classic and Understated

Who is your favorite musician or band?

L: I love Ben Folds (thanks to my husband, his #1 fan) and The Black Keys.  I also love ‘80s and ‘90s music that bring back great memories.

Name 3 things you never leave home without?

L: My cell phone, sunglasses and a purse (my outfit is just not complete without a purse)

If you could have dinner with one famous person, who would it be?

L: I wanted to write something profound here, but honestly, it would be Hugh Jackman because he is really nice to look at and I love his accent.

What’s the weirdest thing to ever happen to you?

L: When I was 16, I was at the park with a friend and saw a momma squirrel with about a dozen of her babies. We thought they were so cute so we got a little closer to get a better look.  That was when the cute little squirrels turned on us and starting chasing us across the park!  I am sure people thought we were crazy running for our lives away from cute, fuzzy little squirrels, but it really was a very scary experience.  To this day I will not get close to one and think that they are all out to get humans. 

What’s your favorite part about working at Zappos?

L: I love that there is always something fun and interesting going on, there really is never a dull day at Zappos.  It may be a Super Hero parade, Tu-Tu Tuesday or something simple like lunch with my team, but every day is a fun adventure here! 

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Mustaches for a Good Cause: It's MOVEMBER 2011!

movember,fight male prostate and testicular cancer,Zappos HQ,Zappos culture,mustaches,Movember Foundation,Male Cancer initiatives,

It’s that time of year again! To benefit the Movember Foundation, Zapponians are putting on their best mustaches! For every fake mustache pic sent to the Zappos PEACE team, Zappos.com is donating 50 cents to the foundation, and for every REAL ‘stache, $1 will be donated towards the fund.

We also had a bake sale and stick mustache sale with 100% if the proceeds going towards helping the fight against prostate cancer and other male cancer initiatives. Every ‘stache counts!

To learn more about the Movember Foundation, click HERE.

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Happy Halloween!

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The Zappos Family would like to wish everyone a happy and safe Halloween!

Tell us what your costumes you and your family are wearing today on the comments section below!

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Zapponian Spotlight: Joey M.

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For this week’s Zapponian Spotlight, we’re getting to know Joey M., a proud member of the US Army Reserves. Joey is one of our awesome ZCLT reps who left on a tour of duty for Afghanistan and rejoined the Zappos Family when he returned home.

We asked Joey a few questions to get to know him a little bit more:

What led you to join the Army Reserves?

J: I didn't want to wake up one day when I was old and say, "I wish I would have served."

What is greatest thing you have learned while in the Army?

J:  I've learned to excel in stressful environments, and that nothing really bothers me anymore.

What 3 words describe your personality?

J:  Determined, loyal, sarcastic.

What do you like to do for fun?

J:  Travel, watch sports, and work on my Nissan 350z

What is your favorite core value and why?

J:  #5. Pursue Growth and Learning - I love working at a place that allows us to learn so many things and pursue anything you have interests in.

What is your most embarrasing moment?

J:  I truly try very hard to not embarrass myself or let others embarrass me.  So I can't actually think of anything right now.  However, I'll leave you with  a great quote:  "A person always doing his or her best becomes a natural leader, just by example." - Joe DiMaggio

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Zappos Family “Work Abroad” Program

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 Group pic with the awesome HR team.

The Work Abroad Program allows one person from one department to swap desk with another person from a different department for a week.  Last week, I swapped desks with Lyndsey A. from our HR team. Of course, I still did my daily tech duties while sitting among our HR department.

Sitting in the middle of HR was tons of fun! I got a better understanding of who HR is, and what they do.  HR has its own very unique culture indeed! 

During my week sitting at Lyndsey’s desk, I made new friends, learned new jokes, new communication techniques and got to check out all the crazy desk décor in their area.

embrace and drive change, zapponians, zappos core values, zappos culture, zappos family, zappos hq

Zappos.com HR team decorate their area for Halloween.

Also, I got to witness the Halloween decoration extravaganza, wore a tutu for a day and took a photo with a fake mustache. I guess it’s all in a week’s work! I’m so glad I got to experience office life from a different perspective! I recommend that everyone try it out at least once!