Analysis Of Zappos

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Centuries ago, Machiavelli famously said “There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things." Still today, the difficulties and challenges of leading a transformation across an organization is not a straightforward task or diminutive journey. There’s an immense deal of uncertainty and risk a leader faces when traveling down a path that’s either less travelled or not travelled down at all. Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, is one of those leaders who travelled down the unpaved road of leading his company to transform from a traditional organizational hierarchy paradigm to a new order of self-management and self-organization …show more content…
Motivation is essential to change so it’s important to make the status quo seem more dangerous than staying the same. The sense of urgency should be a time sensitive significant opportunity or potential crisis, such as potential revenue drop, decreasing market share, lack of revenue growth, or flat earnings. The significant opportunity or potential crises is the catalyst to create the climate for change. Tony Hsieh’s sense of urgency for Zappos restructuring focuses on the danger of operating under the status quo of a traditional company. He strongly views the growth of a company and traditional management structure are opposing forces that will lead to the death of innovation and productivity. Conversely, Tony sees a difference in the growth of a city versus a traditional company. He states “Every time the size of a city doubles, innovation or productivity per resident increases by 15 percent.” Tony certainly establishes a sense of urgency and aligns with completing the first step of Kotter’s change theory model. To determine if the sense of urgency is effective, it requires a critical evaluation of the next three steps, forming a guiding coalition of leaders, creating a strategic vision, and communicating the …show more content…
Tony Hsieh skips the second step of forming a guiding coalition of leaders. Consequently, creating an illusion of speeding up the transformational change. Then again, it requires a second consideration since the fundamental principles of Holacracy can play a decisive role in undermining the second step. Holacracy accentuates the importance of self-organizing and adaptive teams without traditional titles. On the other hand, Kotter stresses the importance of the leader’s job titles and credibility. Moreover, Kotter emphasizes the underpinning power and influence of the coalition resides in real leaders in senior level positions promoting the necessity of the coalition. Whereas, titles and management hierarchy in Holacracy are largely immaterial. As for the fourth step, communicate the vision, Kotter recommends three patterns of communication. The three patterns of communication consist of the leader conducting a single meeting, spending a considerable amount of time making speeches to employee groups, and newsletters. Effective and very frequent communication captures the hearts and minds of the employee. Employees will change if they understand the change is useful. Unfortunately, Tony Hseih’s naivety in transforming an organization, steers him to under-communicate the vision. Tony conducts a single meeting but predominately relies on

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