18: Tony Hsieh: A Path to Discovering Your Passion and Life’s Purpose

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Tony Hsieh is an entrepreneur, venture capitalist and the CEO of Zappos.com

In 1999, Tony Hsieh sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded, to Microsoft for $265 million. He then joined Zappos as an adviser and investor, and eventually became CEO.

In 2009, Zappos was listed as one of Fortune magazine’s top 25 companies to work for, and was acquired by Amazon later that year in a deal valued at over $1.2 billion on the day of closing.

Tony shares the different business lessons he learned in life through LinkExchange, Zappos, and more. Ultimately, he shows how using happiness as a framework can produce profits, passion, and purpose both in business and in life.

Favorite Success Quote

“There’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.” – Morpheus, The Matrix

Key Points

1. Surround Yourself with the Right People 

Nothing will affect your ability to achieve your goals more than the people that you are surrounding yourself with.

Whether these are the employees that you hire for your business, the friends that you associate with, or the person you are romantically involved with, noting can make or break your success more than your social circle or employees.

The first step that you need to take to guarantee your success whether in business, health, or relationships is to seek out the best people possible and start spending more time with them.

If this means that you need to invest in a high level mastermind, then do it.

If this means that you need to fire your entire team and hire only 1-2 highly paid guys who are world class at what they do, then take action and get it done.

If this means that you need to break up with your current partner so that you can work on yourself, then do it!

It will not be easy, but surrounding yourself with A+ players is the best way to get in the fastlane to success.

And associating with small minded people is the fastest way to guarantee failure.

2. Build Something You Believe In 

Lots of men get into entrepreneurship for the money.

They do it because they want freedom and financial success, not because they are doing something that they really believe in.

This is a huge mistake.

Success can only come from a place of passion and intense belief.

If you believe in what you are trying to build and create, then nothing will hold you back from your goals.

But if you are just looking for a way to add an extra 0 to your bank account, then the first obstacle or bump in the road will derail your entire plan.

Find something that you are willing to suffer for, something that you believe in with every fiber in your body, and then go to work on that.

The money will come later.

3. Stay True to Yourself

In a world that constantly tries to get us to fit in and fill the mold set by society, there is nothing more challenging than staying true to yourself.

But there is also nothing that is more rewarding.

When you can stand strong in the face of uncertainty and doubt and be true to yourself, to your values, to your dreams, and to your beliefs, you will build a level of confidence and self fulfillment that no amount of money can buy.

It will not be easy.

In fact, it will be the hardest thing that you do and the world will constantly try to test you and force you to conform.

But if you stay true to yourself, the rewards are great, and the satisfaction that you will achieve from knowing that you are your own man will make it all worth it.

4. Consistency is the Key to Success

The simplest key to success is consistency.

Lots of guys set a goal and then go about it with an unsustainable level of intensity until they burn out and fail.

They want to get in shape so they commit to going to the gym for 12 hours a week.

They want to make more money so they starting working 16 hour day.

They want to get better with women so they go out and try to approach 100 girls.

But this is counterproductive and will ultimately result in failure.

If you want to be successful then just pick one or two things you can do consistently over time and you will achieve your goals.

Go to the gym three days a week for the entire year and you will see greater results then going 6 times a week for a month.

Do one thing for your business each day and you will see money pouring in much faster than you would if you did 100 things in a month.

Pick a goal and be consistent.

5. Trust Your Intuition 

We all have a little voice in our head that tells us when we are on the right path.

But the great travesty of life is that many men decide to ignore this voice and listen to other people who may or may not have our best interest at heart.

This is not to say that you shouldn’t listen to mentors and people who are smarter than you.

But if you feel deep down that you need to do something, then you need to take responsibility for your life and do it.

Trusting your own intuition will give you a power that you never knew you had, and even if it turns out that you were wrong, at least you were wrong.

When you trust yourself, you cannot blame success or failure on anyone else.

And this is what breeds true success.

Influential Books

Great by Choice by Jim Collins

Made to Stick by Chip Heath

Tribal Leadership by Dave Logan

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

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Connect with Tony Hsieh

Zappos.com

@TonyHsieh

downtownproject.com

Tony’s best selling book Delivering Happiness

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