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Airtasker appoints Mahesh Muralidhar as new Head of People Operations, launches new office

May 27, 2017 Appointments No Comments Email Email

Airtasker has appointed former Canva People Lead Mahesh Muralidhar as its new Head of People Operations, as the platform zooms past one million community users.Mahesh Muralidhar joins Airtasker as the startup upgrades its Sydney headquarters to fit its rapidly growing headcount. Located upstairs from its old space in the Sydney CBD, the new office offers more space and amenities and is a signal of the organisation’s ambitions.

“Since its launch in 2012, Airtasker has focused heavily on building traction and scaling the culture of our community online marketplace. But as soon as we took a moment to come up for air, we discovered that we had not done a good enough job focusing on the happiness of our own people,” Airtasker CEO Tim Fung said.

“When we finally took a moment to ask our team what we could do better, we realised that a focus on people ops was going to be our number one priority for building a truly great company.”

“Now, we’re turning that focus inwards as we hit the next stage of our growth.”

Canva took out JobAdvisor’s coolest company award two years in a row and is renowned for its strong people focus.

Muralidhar’s new role at Airtasker will see him refine the company’s culture and locate the best talent to help support the platform’s rapid growth.

Despite the cliche around startup perks, Muralidhar says workplace culture is primarily based on clarity of your vision and goals, bringing on board the right talent and setting them up for success.

“The best talent want to see working business models, success and a big vision. As well as leaders they can trust. They want to feel supported and secure in their role. They want to work around people whom they respect and can learn from.”

“Australia has a vibrant startup space, but there are few runaway success stories. Airtasker is one of them.”

The new office and the point of its ping pong table

While Muralidhar considers perks like ping pong tables as a visual representation of a company’s office culture, he says they shouldn’t be used to define it.

“There’s been a trend towards investing in these objects with the hope that their purchase will instantly improve culture in the workplace. But these objects always need to be tied to an economic objective,” Muralidhar says.

“Feel like your team is pushing hard and could use a freshener?” Then invest in an activity.

“Could internal communications be improved? Then invest in a mixer. Culture can’t be addressed on its own and always needs to be tied to the values of the company, its economic goals and easing the friction that can come with growth.”

“Investing in perks is a great idea, provided you’re clear on the tangible benefits those perks are creating for your people, your culture and your brand.”

Airtasker’s new recently renovated offices feature a ping pong table and arcade machine. The space also includes breakout work booths, a large kitchen, stand-up desks, contemporary artwork.

Airtasker currently employs over 70 staff. Find out more about  Airtasker.

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