Artwork for The Cost of Happiness: Tony Hsieh

The Cost of Happiness: Tony Hsieh

Imperative Entertainment and Vespucci
Society & CultureDocumentaryTechnology

Billionaire Zappos founder and tech CEO Tony Hsieh was obsessed with happiness and helping people achieve it. After running “the world’s happiest company” for two decades, Hsieh created his experimental community — The Downtown Project — dedicated to pursuing happiness. But what do Tony's life and death reveal about Silicon Valley’s obsession with re-imagining how society functions? "A gripping tale" - The Guardian The Cost Of Happiness is reported and hosted by Nastaran Tavakoli-Far. It is produced by Charlie Towler. Cover art and design by Jeana Sullivan. The story editor is Meara Sharma, and Thomas Curry is the managing producer. Scoring and sound-design by Charlie Brandon-King. For Imperative Entertainment, the executive producer is Jason Hoch, and for Vespucci, the executive producers are Daniel Turcan, Johnny Galvin, and Matt Willis.


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Latest Episodes

Nastaran chats with Dan Lyons, best-selling author and screenwriter for HBO's Silicon Valley, about the Tony Hsieh story and the highs and lows of tech company culture. more

a year ago

What remains of Tony’s utopian, llama-shaped vision for a neighbourhood?  more

a year ago

Once again, Tony finds himself at the center of a toxic culture characterized by suspicion and silence. Except this time, there’s no escape. more

a year ago


4.2 out of 5 stars from 109 ratings
  • Great podcast. It tells a very interesting story, but what's more important, it places it in a broader context, raising vital issues regarding work and power in the current stage of capitalism.

    a year ago
  • Too real!

    I’m an artist with Anthropologie and this hit really close to home. Thank you!! I feel validated in my struggles. They wrote me up for saying I was “over spring already lol” when asked how I was feeling about spring display sketches on December 20th….hah!! It was unacceptable yet I’m supposed to be in love with everything I make…..

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • What a waste of time

    Fascinating story made boring and simplistic.

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • 5 stars


    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • No code for contentment

    Excellent take down and dissection of the happiness bubble so many companies feel forced to try to emulate. The most insightful quote, “…there is no code for contentment”. A must listen for those who came to work, enticed by the free craft espresso latte beer machine on every floor, bean bags and barstools instead of desks, but left feeling vacant and disillusioned. As Nastaran explains, this is a recipe for despair and an insult to our intelligence.

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago

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