Airbnb Reviews | Glassdoor

Airbnb Reviews

Updated April 12, 2018
267 reviews

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3.8
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Airbnb CEO & Co-Founder Brian Chesky
Brian Chesky
208 Ratings

267 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • work life balance is reasonable (in 26 reviews)

  • Great benefits from free food and drinks (in 34 reviews)

Cons
  • But work/life balance is possible (in 56 reviews)

  • Some growing pains from rapid expansion (in 30 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Software Engineer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Great Product
    - Very friendly people
    - In hypergrowth mode, lot of learning opportunities.

    Cons

    Pain of hypergrowth, processes being put in, can slow work down.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place to Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great opportunities to learn and grow career

    Cons

    None that I can think of

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Timing is everything"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Airbnb full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great people to work with, very engaging company culture. We are spoiled. Lots of personal development opportunities. It's like being in a university where there are many extra curricular activities to be involved with. You're allowed to voice your opinion without reprimand. Employees stand in solidarity with one another.
    Data University is great!
    Ergonomic office
    Beautiful campus globally

    Cons

    Processes have become more bureaucratic. Projects get scraped if it's not sexy enough.
     My department was prideful about working in the realms of ambiguity. I personally think this is an unhealthy habit to work under.
    There is movement, but you have to be smart and act on it. However, even if you move into a new role, it's not always guaranteed secure or of any value towards your career development.
    Lots of unnecessary spending to keep us "happy", it ends up cutting opportunities for other important things.

    Advice to Management

    Go back to the old core value of "Simplify". Things seem to have gotten very messy in terms of leadership and management.


  4. Helpful (10)

    "Style over substance"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - More diverse workforce than other tech companies I've been at, which is heartening

    Cons

    - Work/Life balance is non-existent. Good luck trying to have a personal life after you start working here.
    - The pay is pretty paltry, no bonus structure, equity package is nothing to write home about.
    - Decisions are frequently based on "feelings" rather than data, which can be infuriating. Data-driven decision making and overall rigor is not something that's naturally part of the culture. It varies team to team based on whether someone came from a company that was better at utilizing data in everyday work.
    - Airbnb likes to do everything their own way even if there are existing solutions in the market. Not very smart if they think reinventing the wheel is always the right decision.
    - The caliber of employees at Airbnb is not nearly as good as ones I've worked with at "Big 4" tech companies, but they sure think they are hot shots. A lot of arrogance fuels the company at every level. There's a lot of style over substance here.
    - The SF office looks great out in the atrium, but the desk areas tend to be dark, cramped and loud. Not the best environment for concentrating and getting things done.
    - Employees get their personal items stolen off their desks on a regular basis with little assistance from Security team.
    - This is very much a hospitality company first and foremost, and a tech company second. Quite a culture shock if you're coming from a die hard tech company (consumer/enterprise software, AR, VR, robotics, gaming, etc). I've experienced this numerous times: mentioning something marginally technical and being faced with blank stares.
    - The company is a hot mess internally. No standardization in software, minimal cross-team collaboration, no version history in the codebase (well there might be some but not for everything that gets committed), lots of politics and jockeying for position/visibility, teams are very protective rather than collaborative seemingly forgetting we all work at the same place for the same goals.

    Advice to Management

    - Brian is not a leader who inspires confidence. None of the founders actually do. They don't hold a candle to the likes of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Larry & Sergey, Elon Musk, etc.
    - Disappointing LT left since he was getting us on track to growing up and doing things smartly.
    - Focus on doing a few things really well, not a million things at below average. We're currently doing the latter.
    - The culture enables arrogance and people being jerks to each other. The Core Values interviews are a failure since they don't seem to be able to sniff this out.


  5. "Amazing place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Fast paced, mission-driven, technically challenging, amazing growth and trajectory

    Cons

    Engineering is still concentrated in only a handful of offices

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up!


  6. Helpful (8)

    "Decent company, poorly run engineering org"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Airbnb full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Visually appealing office
    - Good salary and benefits
    - Free food
    - Company has a good external reputation, solid growth potential

    Cons

    - More of a hospitality company than a tech company. Engineering isn't a core part of the culture, and it shows in the quality and visibility of the team's work.
    - Systems receive low traffic levels (compared to those in search, ads, social networking, etc.), so little need to improve efficiency or innovate in the backend space
    - Weak engineering leadership that won't make hard technical decisions, push through cross-team initiatives like SOA
    - Senior IC promotions and external hires based more on visibility than technical skill and impact
    - Steady stream of departures by strong engineers and managers
    - Culture of niceness and praise to the extreme. Hard to provide constructive feedback, push back against bad projects.
    - Cramped, noisy desk areas with low-quality monitors and office furniture
    - Below average meals and snacks


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Customer Experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Airbnb full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Awesome benefits, lovely office, amazing co-workers, food!

    Cons

    No real way to advance in this office - you either have to move to SF, or compete with a bajillion other super talented and motivated co-workers. Not flexible about schedules or working from home. Less and less focus on employee happiness, more and more focus on the bottom line.

    Advice to Management

    Bring back the culture. It's gone.

  8. Helpful (4)

    "Great Place to Work But Company Culture Feels Like a Cult"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Airbnb full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - great benefits and work life balance
    - good hiring bar
    - friendly co-workers
    - relatively little office politics

    Cons

    They love promoting their work culture and thinks it's absolutely amazing. It's great if you fall very much to the left of the political spectrum like the rest of the company (and SF). But if you happen to have a couple right-wing sympathies like me such as expressing your admiration for Ben Carson in a team lunch, you will be met with frowns and disdain. I overheard an argument where a co-worker said he opposed universal income and everyone around him started to argue with him. I'm pretty sure if you said you liked Trump in any way, you'd be out of the building with all your possessions in a box.

    Also the co-founders are infallible and worshipped by everyone on the team. Their "Is Mankind" campaign was a terrible "Emperor's New Clothes"-esque flop but no one dared to correct them.

    Advice to Management

    Please include "free speech" as a company value


  9. Helpful (2)

    "It’s a cult"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - House Keeper in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - House Keeper in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Don’t. They will guilt trip you and then give you a raise to not to leave. After the raise, they treat you like a puppet since they did you a favor now you do them many favors.
    They don’t do any background checks so you can be a complete criminal with many warrants and still work there.
    They don’t do any drug tests so you can be blood shotted in the eyes and be fine.
    NO MANAGERS EVER CHECK UP ON YOU.

    Cons

    They guilt trip you when you have other priorities to handle.
    They play dumb a lot so you do extra work.
    You get hired for housekeeping and then they want you to fix everything without a flat rate.
    They go back on their words ALOT.
    Their very hypocritical.
    They treat you like a puppet.
    They will threaten you to do something and if you refuse, they will tell you that you won’t have a job if you won’t do what they ask.
    They love hiring people who don’t speak English so you’re just watching what they are doing.
    Managers don’t help out whatsoever.
    As long as they are getting paid; you don’t matter.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to be more observant and lenient when it comes to your employers. Give them a set schedule instead of placing them on call. Be specific with what you’re looking for when filling the positions you’re needing of.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "Culture can be too much"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Airbnb full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Culture, you might never feel mistreated.

    Cons

    Culture, when it is too much, it is a burden. When someone did something wrong, no one will point it out or blame the person, instead, the people who take it too serious might be blamed and in trouble. This makes decision making and pushing project super hard some times.

    Advice to Management

    Value people's contribution, while value the culture.


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