Yet, humility is a core value of one of the fastest growing companies of the last decade, Zappos.com. Ten years after its inception, Zappos.com annual sales exceeded one billion dollars, in part by being nice to customers. Can being nice actually cause you to win in life (and business)?
A decade ago, I began running experiments to see if the neurochemical oxytocin (ox-ee-TOE-sin), not to be confused with the prescription pain reliever Oxycontin, did anything more in humans than contract the uterus during birth, the dogma at the time. Intriguing research in social mammals showed that oxytocin allowed for the toleration of burrow-mates. Maybe, I thought, in humans toleration might scale up to trust, compassion, and humility – the most laudable human behaviors.