Brian Chesky on culture and hiring well

Our first employee was our first engineer and I think we looked for him for four or five months. I probably looked through thousands of people and I probably interviewed hundreds of people.

Some people ask, why did you take so much time on hiring your first engineer? And here’s how we thought about it: I kind of felt like your first engineer is like bringing in DNA to your company. If we were successful, there were going to be a thousand people just like him or her in the company.

So it wasn’t a matter of getting someone to build the next three features that we needed to ship for our users. There was something much more long term and much more enduring, which was “Do I want to work with a hundred or a thousand more people like this?”

You want diversity of background, age, but you don’t want diversity of values. You want very very homogeneous beliefs or values – that’s the one thing that shouldn’t be diverse.

Brian Chesky, founder of AirBnB – How to Start a Startup 2014

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