Airbnb Announces New Work Mode for Employees


Infusing significant flexibility into its work culture, American vacation rental company Airbnb has announced that its employees would be now allowed to work from anywhere. The decision was announced by Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky through an email to its workforce around the globe. He also took to Twitter and wrote “Today, we are announcing that Airbnb employees can live and work anywhere.”

In his tweet, Chesky also shared five key features of the new working pattern at Airbnb. The first feature, he wrote, is that the employees will have the flexibility to choose if they want to work from home or office. “Whatever works best for you,” he added.

The second feature is that workers would be allowed to move anywhere in the country and work from there. In addition, the compensation of the employees will also not change after they move. This is likely to help those employees who want to stay closer to their family or the ones who have always dreamt of working from a particular place.

In the third feature, starting from September this year, Airbnb will enable the employees to travel while working. Employees can now work in over 170 countries for up to 90 days per year in each location. However, it said that employees would still need a permanent address for payroll and tax purpose. The company is also actively working with local governments to facilitate travel for more and more people.

Making sure that the employees don’t lose coherence, Chesky said that team gatherings will be organised and employees will have the opportunity to meet up. Chesky also emphasised that most employees will meet in person every quarter for a week at a time while others could connect more frequently as well.

To implement the new working system, Airbnb will make use of a ‘multi-year roadmap’ and will release two major products every year.

Explaining the idea behind the move, Chesky wrote that “the world has become more flexible” and that Airbnb was only able to recover from the pandemic quickly due to its millions of employees. He further highlighted that the company witnessed the most productive two-year period in Airbnb’s history as employees worked remotely.

The Airbnb bossrecalled how startups in Silicon Valley adopted the open floor plans and on-site parks which became popular later. Similarly, startups today are embracing remote work and flexibility. He added that this system might become the predominant way through which companies will work 10 years from now.

Underlining the advantages of the new work design, Chesky wrote that companies would benefit by limiting their “talent pool to a commuting radius around their offices.” “The best people live everywhere,” he added.

He even discussed the apprehension related to the new design and wrote that the most productive interaction take place in person. He said although platforms like Zoom are great for maintain connections, it is not the best way to deepen them.

The right solution, according to Chesky, should be to combine the efficiency of Zoom with meaningful connection that people establish when they meet. “’Our design attempts to combine the best of both worlds,” he said.

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