Tanja Ruesch, Chief People Officer at GetYourGuide, shares her perspective on what makes GetYourGuide a unique place to work, and how the People team helps unlock unforgettable work experiences.
I joined GetYourGuide first and foremost because of our mission: to unlock the world’s most unforgettable travel experiences.
Having spent the previous 10 years of my career at Amazon, I didn’t think I was ready to move on, yet I was drawn to GetYourGuide. As an avid traveler, and someone who has lived and worked in many different countries, I thrive in a workplace where people from different parts of the world come together to make a difference, and this is what GetYourGuide offered. There are people from over 70 countries working here.
During the interview process, I was asked to prepare my People vision and strategy for the next two to three years. What sounded like a daunting task at first, as I was also working a busy job, turned out to be an energizing and invigorating assignment. I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to turn my vision into reality, and be part of a team that changes how we experience the world when we travel.
Joining a new company and team during a pandemic, and so virtually, was certainly a new experience for me. Every interview and interaction with GetYourGuide had been online, and I accepted the offer without ever meeting anyone in person or seeing the office. I’d been at GetYourGuide for three months before I met my boss Johannes, the CEO, for the first time. How times have changed.
But can the virtual experience ever replace physically working together? Not for me. I don’t think it’s possible in a remote setup to create the same energy you would by being together, sharing, and generating new ideas. So while the virtual onboarding worked remarkably well, I’ll be glad when we get to see a bit more of each other again.
GetYourGuide’s approach to the Future of Work is centered around trust, flexibility, and an understanding that in-person interactions are an integral part of our culture, just as they are to our product. Our approach fosters flexibility, not rules and policies, as each team is different and has different needs.
GetYourGuide’s company culture gives us all a lot of freedom to do our jobs the way we think they should be done. There’s never a dull moment, and those who thrive in ever-changing work environments do well here.
We also place a big emphasis on curiosity and learning, and I love the fact that people don’t confine themselves to their roles or functions. They’ll share ideas and contribute to projects that aren’t related to their day jobs, all because they care, are interested in the topic, and want to learn and grow.
Everyone I’ve met here is hugely driven by a passion to create unforgettable experiences for our customers. I love the ownership and commitment everyone shows. We’re all in this together, and we trust each other to do our jobs well. Plus, the speed at which everyone makes things happen is simply astonishing.
We feed on a climate of trust where mistakes are an opportunity to learn and develop. We just move onto the next challenge and get that one right. We see ourselves as a community of travel-passionate, ambitious people who put their team and customers first. People who want to look back one day and reflect proudly on the mark they made.
The People team proudly represents Workplaces (Facilities/Office Management and IT), People Operations, People Partners, Talent Development, People Analytics, and Talent Acquisition.
Following our company mission, my vision for the People team is to create unforgettable work experiences.
We want to create an environment where you can solve difficult problems with amazing colleagues, and know that customers love the product you’re working on. We want to build a company culture that represents a place you want to work, grow, and learn, and where work is an experience and not a chore.
One of the areas we will invest in 2022 is to create more visible career opportunities within GetYourGuide, so our people can easily find and pursue new growth opportunities if and when they want to.
When I joined in April 2021, many markets were opening up for travel again, and we were catapulted back into high-growth mode. We needed to quickly shift gears as a People team and support the business growth.
We significantly invested in and grew our Tech teams (Engineering and Product) as well as Sales and Operations in 2021. Bringing in great talent from around the world was needed, and we ended up hiring twice the number of the people we set out to at the beginning of the year.
We’re growing significantly in 2022, too. This means finding the right talent and helping them onboard and integrate successfully. It also means creating development opportunities for the people who already work at GetYourGuide, and providing more visibility on internal career paths will be very important for us. There will be many new roles and teams, as well as investment in our technology and systems.
Sharpening our employer brand by telling the story of why people should join (or stay with) GetYourGuide is also underway. How we managed the pandemic and came out stronger than ever is a story we want to tell.
We directly impact the employee experience from the moment a candidate engages with us to discuss an exciting opportunity, right through to the moment someone moves on to new opportunities. Our culture is the foundation for how we work and deliver results, and we’re only as good as the stories our people tell about us.
Interested in a career at GetYourGuide? Check out our Careers Page.
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