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16 people found this helpful  

Management is cold & clueless. The food is good.

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
Former Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA (US)

I worked at CouchSurfing full-time

Pros

1) The office furniture is nice
2) Ping-pong table
3) The chef is a very good chef.
4) Good health benefits to balance the stress and hostility from Management.
5) Mediocre severance

Cons

1) Co-workers disappear from the office and you don't know until weeks later that they were not on vacation. This happens monthly!

2) Company relies heavily on a media façade to spin the negative comments of the Community regarding the Corporate take-over of the company and the deletion of website features.

3) Product & Management has background in games and doesn't understand the CouchSurfing community or why the product (which they inherit) was successful in the past. This leads to poor design decisions, wasted engineering hours, and lots of last-minute pressure to deliver last-minute changes.

4) "Unlimited vacation" is NOT good like it may sound. Unlimited vacation mean you only take vacation if your manager lets you (even if you earned the vacation). State of California requires employer to pay you untaken vacation hours when you are terminated but unlimited vacation avoids this because you do not earn any vacation hours. Basically it is a trick to avoid having to pay for unused vacation hours when they fire you.

Note: They are writing 5-star reviews on Glassdoor to balance out the negative reviews. Read the positive and negative ones and make decision yourself. It is the media propaganda game like all the internet is! My recommendation: Don't work too hard, don't work overtime, and be prepared for termination regardless of how good your performance is.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Treat people with respect. Don't rely on media to pretend that you are a respectful & cultural company. You clearly doesn't care about employees or about the people in the Community. Don't see the Community and your employees as data points.

Also, Stop lying.

In another review a person wrote "Couchsurfing has (finally) completed planned lay-offs of low-performing staff" which is just trying to create a scapegoat for the management's poor performance and mistakes. For example, the latest website updates which took much longer than anticipated, and look & perform poorly.

Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook

28 Other Employee Reviews for CouchSurfing (View Most Recent)

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  1. 17 people found this helpful  

    Hire and fire

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Mobile Applications Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Mobile Applications Engineer in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at CouchSurfing full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    The couches in our giant sky-lit office in San Francisco are comfy.
    Top-of-the-line medical, dental, and vision. 100% company-sponsored for employees. 50% for spouses and dependents.
    Extra time off to surf on members’ couches and experience Couchsurfing firsthand. Travel expenses.
    Equity stake in a start-up that’s already had eight years of success as a former non-profit. And a salary that rewards my creativity.
    Free healthy lunch, dinner, and snacks. Friday happy hour. Caffeine on tap. Safe parking for bicycles. Weekly ping pong turnaments. No dress code.

    Cons

    There's no strategy and no vision. A lot of stress and panic lately, resulting in last minute cancellations. If they don't fire me soon, like most of the people who worked here when I started, I'll have to quit before I go crazy or get an ulcer.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start telling the truth and listen to our customers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  2. 15 people found this helpful  

    What was once a user-centric, hospitality-driven trusted community is quickly turning into just another travel website

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I worked at CouchSurfing full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Many of the people who work at CouchSurfing are wonderful, but leadership leaves much to be desired. Members of CouchSurfing are extremely passionate and committed; that kind of consumer engagement is hard to come by. That said, many of the most engaged members have become disenchanted and frustrated with recent changes to the website, and some of the best community leaders are leaving the site.

    Cons

    I agree with another reviewer who said that this has turned into a hierarchical organization run by a culture of fear. There have been several rounds of layoffs in the past 18 months, with little to no explanation given. Highly skilled and talented people have chosen to leave. CouchSurfing is losing its soul.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It's one thing to talk about having a strong culture, and another thing to practice what you preach. Diversity in perspectives, skills, nationality, background makes a team stronger, not weaker. Finally, I worry about safety issues when you have men in many countries who perceive CouchSurfing to be a dating website.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
There are newer employer reviews for CouchSurfing

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