5 things you didn’t know these corporations did

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Back in the day a businessman took out a loan, started a company, manufactured something, sold it, collected revenue, grew an imposing mustache and died at his desk. There was a template. It worked. Why mess with success? Flash forward to today. The competition is fierce, and it takes more than just doing what everyone else does and growing the right mustache to succeed in business. It takes imagination, and these five companies have it.

5 The Google Job Interview

Google has reportedly stopped doing this””and when you see the questions, you’ll understand why””but there was a time when it asked job applicants brain teasers. Examples: “œHow many golf balls can fit on a school bus?””œDesign an evacuation plan for San Francisco.””œHow many pianos tuners are there in the entire world?””œYou are shrunk to the height of a nickel and your mass is proportionally reduced so as to maintain your original density. You are then thrown into an empty glass blender. The blades will start moving in 60 seconds. What do you do?”(Answers to these questions are in the link at the bottom of this story.)

4 Apple’s Secret Packaging Room

If you own an Apple product, you know the company takes its packaging seriously. Have you ever tried to throw an Apple box in the trash? It’s too pretty. If you know anything about Apple’s secret ways, it will not surprise you to learn the company has a secret packaging room. Apple pays a guy to sit in a sealed room and open and close boxes all day. The company’s goal is to evoke an emotional response when a customer opens a package””and possibly to drive one of its employees absolutely insane.

3 Airbnb Pays for Employee Vacations

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Airbnb, which rents unoccupied living space and other short-term lodging, pays its employees $2,000 to travel. Oh, that’s nice of them. What a swell thing to do. But Airbnb has an ulterior motive. Its employees will likely stay at Airbnb properties, which provides them with firsthand customer experience, which provides the company with valuable feedback on how to improve Airbnb for its customers.

2 Zappos Pays New Employees to Quit

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After five weeks of training, the online shoe and apparel company Zappos offers trainees $3,000 to quit. Why? As CEO Tony Hsieh said, “œWe don’t want employees that are just there for a paycheck. We want employees who are there because the culture is the right fit for them.”Only 2-3 percent of trainees take “œthe offer.”Not only does this weed out unmotivated employees, it heightens the personal commitment of the 97-98 percent who stay.

1 Amazon Is Heavily Staffed by Ex-Military

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If you’ve ever marveled at Amazon’s logistical abilities, especially during the holidays, part of the credit goes to ex-military personnel. Amazon is the No. 1 employer of vets in the country. In 2011, 25 percent of new salaried hires at its fulfillment centers were ex-military. “We actively seek leaders who can invent, think big, have a bias for action and deliver results on behalf of our customers,” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos told Fortune Magazine. “These principles look very familiar to men and women who have served our country in the armed forces, and we find that their experience leading people is invaluable in our fast-paced work environment.”

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