Barbara Messing, CMO of TripAdvisor

How ambition and having fun at work go hand in hand, how to "put money in the little guy's pocket" when you're a multinational, and retaining a sense of exhilarating urgency and excitement as your organisation grows.

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Barbara Messing, CMO of TripAdvisor

"I felt very lucky that I was born when I was born because I ended up being able to experience this incredible revolution."

Barbara MessingMy guest on this podcast is Barbara Messing, CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of TripAdvisorthe indispensable resource on all things travel.

350 million people visit the site every month, and it offers 2 million different accommodation options  all over the world, for all tastes and budget ranges!


The productive alchemy between being ambitious and having fun

I ask Barbara: when she was a little girl, what did she want to be when she grew up? You might be surprised at her unapologetic answer!

Barbara has a refreshing and uplifting take on personal ambition and makes it very clear that it's crucial to remember that ambition goes together with having fun and being a superb team member.


Did innovation stop after we invented penicillin?

Can human beings still come up with giant leaps forward, or from now on is it just a matter of incremental progress?

Barbara is very optimistic about the pace of innovation. She points out the role that the Internet has played in distributing the funds that created the space for freedom and creativity.


Working in a huge organisation but keeping up the startup spirit

Barbara gives us on the secrets behind the success of TripAdvisor: even as they were becoming a big organisation, they managed to maintain a spirit of speed and excitement. Their ethos is to put things out to market quickly instead of getting bogged down in bureaucracy

This means making decisions quickly even when you have incomplete information: you can never be 100% sure that you're making the absolute best decision. Listen to Barbara on how she manages the uncertainty and what kind of work environment you have to foster to keep up the positive momentum - especially when half your team works remotely!

I love the answer that Barbara gives to "What advice would you give yourself as a little girl?": it's something to keep in mind when dispensing or receiving career advice!


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For more on creating and maintaining a great company culture and instilling a sense of fun and excitement in an organisation as it grows, listen to Julia Lynes.

For more on harnessing visitors' reviews to deliver white-glove service every time and leveraging TripAdvisor for free marketing when you're a small, family-owned business, listen to Deirdre McGlone.

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