…oduct simpler, adding more use cases, increasing conversion of new users to retained users, etc. In summary: Once you reach a certain point and have built a sticky product, you have to stop building for the users you already have, and start building for that next hundred million users. You have to be willing to risk angering your existing users in order to win the next big group.
It is worth noting that upon introducing this, Mike remained hardcore about minimizing the notion of P&Ls across these groups. His (impossible to argue) logic was simply that one could not reasonably account for the costs side of a P&L because (a) most costs were not under the control of a business unit and (b) business units relied on each other for much of their business success. This latter point could be illustrated by a favorite saying of the leader of the Word team who used to say “our best feature for competing with WordPerfect is Excel”.
“Joe, Nate, and I did some soul-searching over the last year,” wrote Chesky. “We asked ourselves, ‘What is our mission? What is the big idea that truly defines Airbnb?’ It turns out the answer was right in front of us. People thought Airbnb was about renting houses. But really, we’re about home. You see, a house is just a space, but a home is where you belong. And what makes this global community so special is that for the very first time, you can belong anywhere. That is the idea at the core of our company: belonging.”