Recruiter Spotlight: Cody, This Week's @InsideZappos Social VIP

I guess you could call me somewhat of a rarity here in Las Vegas. My Grandparents moved here in the early 1950s and soon after, they had my dad. Add about 30 years to that story when my dad met my mom and – ta da – I came into this world. Being a Vegas native, let alone a second generation Vegas native, is pretty rare here. Most residents are Vegas transplants, but we natives do exist, as uncommon as we may be.

  #InsideZappos, inside zappos,zapponian spotlight, zapponians, Las Vegas natives, zappos core values, zappos culture, zappos employees, Zappos Family, Zappos Human Resources, Zappos Recruiter Spotlight, Zappos Recruiters, Why all this history about me you ask? Well, being born and raised here in Las Vegas, one of the most common questions I get is, “Do you ever plan on leaving?” Great question! Let’s talk about it. I have friends who are from all over the world and have lived in many different places. Sometimes I think about what it would be like to start new somewhere else and as exciting and great as it sounds, I always come back to the realization that I love Las Vegas. It’s my home.

Just call me Oprah as here are some of my favorite things (in no specific order) – The bearable winters, hot summers, Lake Mead, Mt. Charleston, Red Rock, downtown, great restaurants (I’m a huge foodie), Vegas shows, great shopping, 24-hour everything, being only a few hours away from the beach and Zion National Park. But the one thing I definitely cannot leave off of this list is Zappos.

Zappos moved to Nevada in 2004, and it’s still crazy to me that it took me, a Vegas native, eight years to find them. I often ask myself, “What took you so long?”  Either way, I found Zappos and I love it.

I first started within CLT (Customer Loyalty Team) where I wowed our customers who called in. I had never experienced a better job before this. My background was in HOA management so Zappos was like Disneyland to me. Almost a year into Zappos I knew I wanted to be in recruiting, and just my luck, there was an opening!

Five interviews later, I found out I didn’t get the job. Super sad, I know. I was bummed but I was determined. Core value #9 – Be Passionate & Determined, is my favorite core value. I took the feedback I received to heart and I did all that I could to make sure the next time would be the right time. In January of this year another position opened up and I couldn’t have been more excited, but scared all the same time. After a couple more interviews, I had my feedback session where I was told I didn’t get the position again, just to be surprised by the whole team in the hallway to tell me I did. Yes! Now I am here, writing this blog.

One of the many things that Zappos has done to make my list of favorite things is that this company never stops surprising me. Big surprises, little surprises, all kinds of surprises. The biggest reason I love Zappos is because they let me be me, the real me. I have never felt more comfortable in my own skin than I have since day one here. 

When you live in a world with so much judgment, it’s refreshing to spend 40 hours a week with none of those shenanigans. I’m a 26-year old-guy with gel nails and I love it. My team loves it. My Zappos family loves it. Core Value # 3 – Create Fun and a Little Weirdness – one of my daily mantras. Next week will be my two-year anniversary and here’s to hoping for many more!

 

Cheers!

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Embrace and Drive Change

What do you think of when you hear the word change?  No, I’m not referring to the straggling coins that we carry around in our pocket.  But change—as in a sudden shift in habit, mood, or season.  We inevitably experience change on a daily basis.  We cry upon discovery of that first grey hair.  We endure our favorite TV series ending after a number of seasons.  We learn to accept that overalls may never make a comeback.  We grieve when we lose a loved one.  We get anxious when we have to step out of our daily routine.  We rejoice in seeing close friends get married.  The list goes on and on.  Artists have written a number of top hit songs about change because we experience it on so many levels.

The concept of change is a hot topic here at Zappos as it is our second core value.  Not only do we embrace change, but we want to drive it.  This is a foreign concept to most people.  Some people clam up at the thought of change because it means taking risks and stepping outside of our comfort zone.  Some people chase after it, seeking the thrill that comes with the adventure.  But if there is one thing that we have in common, it is that we all fear it on some level.  It's like closing our eyes and walking down a path with an unknown destination. We do, however, have the opportunity to take a proactive approach and tackle it head first.
 
Here at Zappos, we are constantly re-evaluating the way we do things.  Why change things when they are good, you ask?  Sure we could keep doing the things that are working.  But as our company grows, our routine way of approaching things needs to shift as well.  We look at the gap between what is and what could be and find a way to bridge that gap.  Yes, sometimes it is a little scary trying something new, but it’s all about taking that leap of faith.

Over the past few years, our company has taken leaps and bounds to enhance our customers’ experience, rethink the way we self-organize, and foster the entrepreneurial community here in downtown Las Vegas.  Individual teams have pushed themselves to think outside of the box and have grown so much in the process.

Change is not perfect by any means. There are plenty of times when things do not work out the way a team might hope. But there are other times when having a positive mindset around change has lead to innovation. With this innovation has come great success. It is this success that continues to inspire our employees and other collaborative groups to throw a kinder eye to change.

So there are two choices we can make: We can embrace change or we can suffer through it.  Instead of fearing it, let us learn to welcome it.  We must desire change, knowing that good can come from it.  This is not limited to the work world. Life is filled with trials and many seasons of change. They are sometimes hard to digest in the very moment, but they can often lead to incredible lessons.  
 
We must see change as the beginning of an exciting new chapter and have faith in the adventure that follows. It doesn’t matter if you are an individual going through the roller coaster of life, a small business trying to get the ball rolling, or a big company who is already rocking and rolling.
 
What choice will YOU make next time you encounter change?

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Our Neck of the Woods, Episode 1: Norbinn R.

Interested in moving to Vegas? On the fence? In this new series called In Our Neck of the Woods, we talk to different Zapponians about what they love about living and working right here in Las Vegas.
 
For our inaugural episode, Norbinn talks about what he and his family enjoy doing in and around the Vegas valley.

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Inside the Photo Studio: Ivan

Take a peak "Inside the Photo Studio" at Zappos.com and see what we are all about! Each month we will profile a different member of our team to give you a snapshot of his/her day-to-day as we get your favorite products up on the site.

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Inside the Photo Studio: Mark

In this month's episode of "Inside the Photo Studio", we get to know a little bit about Mark, one of our in-studio photographers.

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Inside the Photo Studio: Lucas

Take a peak "Inside the Photo Studio" at Zappos.com and see what we are all about! Each month we  profile a different member of our team to give you a snapshot of his/her day-to-day as we get your favorite products up on the site.

This month's feature is on Zappos Studio Manager, Lucas.

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Inside the Photo Studio: April T.

Take a peek "Inside the Photo Studio" at Zappos.com and see what we are all about! Each month we  profile a different member of our team to give you a snapshot of his/her day-to-day as we get your favorite products up on the site.

This month's feature is on Junior QA, April!

Recruiter Spotlight: Althea, @InsideZappos Tech Ambassador

@InsideZappos, Zappos Careers, zappos jobs, Zappos Recruiters, Zappos Recruiting, zappos core values, Zappos Downtown Las Vegas, Zappos Technical Recruiter, Zappos Tech, #InsideZappos,Zapponians, Zappos Culture, Zappos employees, If you’d told me a year ago that I’d be living in Las Vegas and working for Zappos as a technical recruiter, I would have probably laughed and muttered under my breath that “YOU’RE CRAZY.” Truth be told, as I sit here and write this, I still can’t believe that this is my reality. You see, I’ve always been a bit of a free spirit at heart with a sense of wanderlust and big dreams for my life and I’d even refer to one of my favorite quotes – “Fate loves the fearless” – as my mantra. However, it wasn’t until last fall that I really started embodying my wanderlust and fearless spirit. The day I actually boarded my flight from San Francisco to Las Vegas to interview with Zappos is when my fearless spirit ignited.
 
Even though I’ve only been with Zappos a little over 5 months, my serendipitous collision with this company started in the small town of Chico, CA almost twelve years ago when I was attending college and working full time at a women’s boutique downtown in customer service. I worked long hours putting together amazing outfits for the locals and one day, as I was walking to work, I noticed a new store a few doors down from us opening up--ZAPPOS. “Hmmm… funny name,” I thought to myself. I peered inside the window and noticed an amazing selection of shoes. This will be the perfect place to send all my customers to complete their outfits!

I was startled as a sales associate came outside of the store and greeted me and coaxed me in. She explained the Zappos business model and how they mostly sold shoes online and if there was any time they didn’t have a shoe size in the store stock, they could order it and have it the next day. “WOW,” I thought to myself. This seems like a crazy idea. Shoes, online? Next day shipping? So began my intrigue with this Zappos company.
 
I loved having them as neighbors, and then one day, I noticed a sign that they would be closing. I immediately ran inside to protest this. “Everyone here loves Zappos… what is going on?!,” I asked. The employees explained that actually, business was amazing – so amazing that the strategy to move the company to a full eCommerce site was what they were about to embark upon, as well as move the company and employees to Las Vegas. I was shocked. What a big risk. “You guys are CRAZY…,” I muttered under my breath. I wished them well and it truly was a sad day when they closed their doors in our small little town.
 
Over the last 12 years, I continued to follow Zappos in the news (as well as buy shoes from them) and admired the culture, the technology and Tony Hsieh’s vision from afar. Fast forward to fall of last year. I was needing a new challenge after spending the last eight years in San Francisco. The moment I boarded that plane for my interview, my life was forever changed. Everything I observed over the years was living and breathing in Downtown Las Vegas. The campus was alive with passionate people, the culture was really everything you hear it is and everyone is truly a family.
 
As a technical recruiter for Zappos, I am fortunate to work alongside the tech teams that are working on the CRAZY ideas and innovations that continue to set us apart from any other eCommerce company. I think of myself as more of a storyteller than a recruiter, as I get to share stories of our amazing company and culture with candidates starting their journey with us.
 
This was the career opportunity fate was telling me to take… and to be fearless. So when I told everyone I was moving to Las Vegas to work for Zappos, I started getting the “you’re CRAZY” comments from friends and family. But that’s the thing… the best ideas, the best business moves, the best adventures are the CRAZY ones.