5 Unexpected Facts (You Never Knew You Needed to Know) About Jobbatical

by Maria Magdaleena Lamp October 23, 2018

It’s Jobbatical’s birthday week!

Having grown from three Estonian founders to an international team of 40+ people, the company has had a pretty amazing four years.

Karoli Hindriks and her cofounders Ronald Hindriks and Allan Mäeots set out in late 2014 to change the world of work. Since then, Jobbatical has become a trailblazer in the talent mobility space. For example, we recently reached a jaw-dropper of a milestone: Jobbatical has registered users from every country on the planet.

This means exactly what you think it means—we can now use the word “literally” in its original meaning when we say we inspire people from, literally, all over the world.

But that’s not the only exciting Jobbatical-related statistic I’ve stumbled upon recently, so join me on a trip down memory lane.

Over the past four years, Jobbatical has racked up:

1 stolen tiramisu

Ah, the early days! Jobbatical’s first office was in a co-working space with a shared kitchen.

Our sales exec Giulia once brought in a homemade tiramisu and put it in the fridge for safekeeping. By the time cake o’clock rolled around at Jobbatical HQ, the other inhabitants of the co-working space had eaten all but two pieces. Needless to say, we moved out of that office ASAP and never looked back.  

No cake for you! Giulia (left), Frankie (middle), and Maria mourn the disappearance of the tiramisu at Jobbatical’s original HQ.

3 priceless life lessons

In the process of growing our fabulously diverse team, we’ve failed and learned a lot more than how not to get desserts stolen. Here are our three rules for building a multicultural team that functions smoothly (as a bonus, they also work as general life lessons):

1. Think of communication as a learnable skill—and then learn it. Stick to commitments and set expectations to build trust. 

2. Be aware of cultural differences and make them work for you. Cultural backgrounds make a difference in the way people work. Don’t assume that everyone thinks the same way you do.

3. Learn to say no. Saying yes to everything causes giant backlogs and anxiety. The occasional no is good for your to-do list (and your sanity) and leaves you with more time to work on the most important things.

However smoothly you communicate, nothing will save you from taking disastrous team photos. We tried, OK?

24 tours around the world

Jobbatical’s existence revolves around building high-performing international teams in perhaps unexpected places. To date, we’ve moved people from 48 countries to companies in 34 different destinations, with a combined travel distance equal to 24 trips around Earth.

Each of their stories is a unique example of how the free movement of ideas makes the world better.

As an example, founder Karoli cites a success story particularly near and dear to her heart: Estonia’s e-Residency program, which has hired 8 people through Jobbatical. “Just two years ago it would have been unthinkable to have non-Estonians working in the government,” she says. “Now we have top non-Estonian people, in a way, building this country. I hope to see more of that in other countries. It’s a very powerful start.”

Clearly, e-Residency’s first three jobbaticlers didn’t just travel far to be here, but also through time. Read their stories here, here, and here.

1,784 years of knowledge

Jobbatical users who have traveled to their dream job have redistributed a whopping 1,784 years of combined experience. That’s, like… almost enough to get an entry-level job these days! But seriously, not a day goes by that we don’t gush over the amazing things our community is getting up to in all corners of the Earth:

An art teacher who moved from Bolivia to Thailand for a marketing job and now runs her own company…

A Romanian finance pro who discovered her passion at a Zambian social enterprise…

A Russian advertising ace whose life and career were transformed when he moved to Malaysia…

A software developer who moved from South Africa to Estonia and became a startup CTO…

The stories keep coming in from around the globe, and we just can’t get enough of them.

Our CEO Karoli on stage at Mindvalley U, distributing knowledge about Jobbatical

909,879 Slack messages

Ever since we started using Slack for team-wide communication in mid-2015, it has pretty much taken over our lives. From strategizing to blowing off steam with humorous gifs in the #random channel, much of the magic of Jobbatical happens on Slack. 

Whether it’s news of our founder having dinner with Al Gore, photos from team outings, or late-night product ideas and brainstorming, each and every message is an affirmation of this team’s commitment to a common goal—helping the world work together.

Happy birthday, Jobbatical! Here’s to many more years of helping people work where they’re happy.

(Speaking of which, do you want to come work with us? Check out our jobs!)

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