“Six months into the business, we got one of those Starbucks coffee machines here in the office. If I had realized the morale boost that would come from having a free coffee machine in the office, I would have got it Day One. It’s almost more exciting than medical benefits. We have one on every floor now.”
So says Darrell Cavens, co-founder and co-owner of Zulily, in a great recent piece in Inc magazine.
Zulily is a daily deals site for moms and kids with membership of 10 million and recent valuation of $1 billion. Early on, he learned a valuable lesson:
It’s amazing how simple it can be to make a person happy.
In every ad agency in which I worked, there was more excitement around half-day Fridays than year-end bonuses.
Free is good.
Never underestimate the power of generosity.
Because nothing is ever given away that isn’t somehow eventually paid back.
Like free lattes. Or free pizza.
Every one of those cups of coffee and sausage slices fuels internal human positivity, and that’s something you can’t put a price on.
Because it leads to happy brains.
Which leads to ideas being created.
Which leads to business improving.
Which leads to more free pizza and caffeine.
It’s the most productive and delicious virtuous circle in the history of the world.