2020 has been the most disruptive year I have experienced in all my 26 years of operating Idealogical. It is astounding to think that we have spent roughly 290 days living in complete uncertainty. Uncertainty of our loved ones’ health and well-being, the uncertainty of what this pandemic will bring, and the uncertainty of the economy.
But, amidst all of this uncertainty, one thing makes me hopeful for tomorrow- my people. My team, who I call my second family. Since March 2020, when working remotely was the only way to keep businesses running, my team has been stepping up to keep more than 1000 of our client’s home offices running without much interruption.
I have seen my team work around-the-clock to ensure the transition to a remote working environment for all our clients went as smoothly as possible. Your business continuity is our top priority.
To my team, I say thank you. You are truly people for others.
To my clients, who have been with me through the ups and downs of Idealogical over the years, I say thank you for your confidence in us. You, our clients, have relied on us for our experience, believed in our partnership and trusted us to keep your business operating through this trying time.
To my vendors, who have tirelessly worked with us during the most challenging times with the highest surge in demand for hardware and software ever. Idealogical wouldn’t have sailed through this pandemic without your support.
To you, I say thank you.
During times of extreme uncertainty in our world, my people – whether it’s my team, my clients, my vendors or my Markham community, all of us chose to respond with our sense of duty.
This holiday season may you and your loved ones be safe and take comfort in knowing that this will end, and hopefully, this time next year, we will all be celebrating the end of the pandemic all together.
At your service always,
Celebrating Tony Hsieh & His Leadership Legacy
There have been many speculations about Tony Hsieh’s cause of death and life choices in his final months. But, that should not come in the way of celebrating his life for the inspiration and legacy he has left behind.
A couple of months ago, Idealogical formed a brand-new Customer Experience Reimagination Team that comprises team members from different departments of the organization.
In its formative days, our Customer Experience Reimagination Team looked at many leaders and literature to give us a sense of direction towards our larger organizational vision – of delivering a legendary customer service experience. The team looked for inspiration from Apple, Amazon and Walt Disney’s way of providing exceptional customer service.
Our inspiration also came from Tony Hsieh and what he had done with Zappos. As the Customer Experience Reimagination Team, one of the first books we read together as a team was Tony Hsieh’s New York bestselling book – Delivering Happiness. Through his thoughts in the book and his ideologies, we felt like we know Tony Hsieh personally, without ever meeting him. That’s the kind of perspective his thought leadership made us feel. So, his passing away hits close to home, and his loss feels like a personal one.
Having said that, here are the top 3 of the many learnings from Tony Hsieh that Idealogical strives to embody.
Customer Service Shouldn’t Be Just A Department; It Should Be The Entire Company
Hsieh made some path-breaking decisions with Zappos keeping customer service in mind. Most service-driven companies only mention that customer is the King, but Hsieh proved it with his way of customer service. He made the purchasing process as easy as it possibly can for Zappos customers. This includes free both ways shipping within the United States, a 365-day return policy and a 24/7 customer feedback line. Additionally, he moved his distribution centre from San Francisco to Las Vegas, Nevada, to reduce the delivery time with a centralized distribution centre.
Company Culture Should Be Your #1 Priority
Hsieh believed that company culture decides the fate of an organization. Once you get the culture right, most of the stuff, like building a brand around customer service, will take care of itself. He gave the world the secret sauce of creating a holistic company culture through core values.
According to Hsieh, coming up with core values that an organization can commit to is important. A commitment to core values means an organization should hire and fire based on the core values. Once you do that, a company will be well on its way to building a company culture that is in line with the brand you want to build.
Chase The Vision; The Money And Profit Will Come
With Zappos, Hsieh made it clear from the very beginning that the company was not just about selling shoes. He wanted to lead a company with purpose and shared values. Instead of coming up with values that only he would relate to, Hsieh went the extra mile and asked his employees what they think the company values should be.
RIP Tony Hsieh!