My concern isn’t Zappos. It’s all the organizations that read about Zappos and decide to copy them without understanding why they are copying them, or what needs to be in place to enable this.This sentiment needs to be adopted by managers for everything they learn about management. There are good management ideas. But there are very few management ideas that you can just take and adopt easily in your organization.
The success of management practices is highly dependent on the rest of the management system of the organization.
I find we are nowhere near accepting enough of the complexity involved in management. We want simple solutions. This unwillingness to deal with the full system is responsible for a great deal of failed management effort.
What Zappos may be able to do successfully may well make little sense for most other organizations. I don't see eliminating all management positions as a wise management practice in general. But I am willing to believe it might be that such a move can work in some organizations.
Related: Pilot on a Small Scale First, Good Advice We Often Ignore - Paying New Employees to Quit at Zappos - Toyota Execution Not Close to Being Copied - Experience Teaches Nothing Without Theory