Airbnb Founder Interview with CEO Brian Chesky

Airbnb Founder Interview with CEO Brian Chesky

Obama O cereal boxWatch Airbnb founder interview with PandoDaily's Sarah Lacy ( it's a long one! about 3 hours) and CEO Brian Chesky as they talk about design, work, life, entrepreneurship, and building a fantastic company. Brian talks about how he started Airbnb and how initially no investors were interested. Currently Airbnb is valued around 1.3 billion, holy-moly! He crafts a rich and honest story about the troubles and issues of starting a new business in San Francisco.  For over a year he and his partner Joe Gebbia continued to work on their "air mattress with poptarts" business idea and eating Capt'n McCain's dry cereal, (another interesting story in itself!) because all the boxes of Obama O's were gone! All the while learning, and defending to his mama, about the difference and nuances between being an entrepreneur and being unemployed. One piece of memorable advice that Brian really embraced, I kinda like too, was from venture capitalist Paul Graham;

It's better to have 100 people who love you than a million people who kinda like you. - Paul Graham


Do good. And do good design

Part of the success of this company is the focus on design. Product and industrial design, creativity, and persistence are all qualities found in both founders, Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia who are also both graduates of the highly regarded design school, RISD. The thought that art and design schools are a waste of time or not a good direction for getting a real job is clearly absurd. The growing concern of economy, freedom, expression are directly dependent  on encouraging a creative culture across all demographics. Design is all around us. Everything we see in our daily world (excluding nature) is made and designed by someone. Some of the design is really bad, not appropriate and at best tolerable. As a society we appreciate design that is good, appropriate, and makes us feel good. So why not design it nicely from the get-go. As a designer I truly love the Airbnb brand, mission and how it all blends perfectly to achieve a level of trust within the community. They did good! They DO good. So you may ask, " Yeah, so do you trust them Cyn?" And I would say, "Heck Ya! Not only do I travel as a guest with Airbnb, but I am a host too!"

What are some of your favorite products or companies who use good design in a wise and appropriate way?