Chip Conley

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Leadership Expert and Former Strategic Advisor, Airbnb

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Chip Conley: Biography at a Glance

  • Chip Conley is an entrepreneur who formerly served as Strategic Advisor for Hospitality and Leadership at Airbnb.
  • Chip is a thought leader at the intersection of psychology and business who disrupts how we think about teaching and learning.
  • He taught his award-winning methods to hundreds of thousands of Airbnb hosts in nearly 200 countries and also mentored current CEO Brian Chesky.
  • Chip's latest book, Learning to Love Midlife: 12 Reasons Why Life Gets Better with Age, inspires readers to embrace midlife as a time of transformation and joy.
  • His book, Wisdom at Work: The Making of a Modern Elder, ignites a powerful conversation about the value of intergenerational connectivity, the wisdom that comes with age, and how to inspire a growth mindset for people of all ages.
  • He founded Modern Elder Academy, the first midlife wisdom school dedicated to transforming aging.
  • Chip also authored Peak and the New York Times bestseller Emotional Equations, which share his own theories on transformation and meaning in business and life. 



Chip Conley served as Airbnb’s Head of Global Hospitality & Strategy for four years. He joined the tiny tech start-up Airbnb nearly a decade ago after a successful career as a boutique hotel company founder and CEO. He was twice the age of the average Airbnb employee which earned him the title "Airbnb's Modern Elder" who was as curious as he was wise. As the internal mentor to the young Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky, Chip got to see the value of intergenerational collaboration in a company that has now grown to be the most valuable hospitality company in the world. His bestselling book Wisdom@Work: The Making of a Modern Elder is a testament to rethinking the value of having 5 generations in the workplace and why more companies are doing their best to encourage their older workers to stay in the workplace longer. While writing Wisdom@Work, Chip was inspired to build the world's first "midlife wisdom school," the Modern Elder Academy, with a 3-acre oceanfront campus in Baja California Sur, Mexico. Chip's Modern Elder Academy has more than 2,000 alums who've come to the Mexican beachfront campus and MEA will be opening two campuses in Santa Fe, New Mexico soon.


The Future of Work: How to Scale Your Culture in a Hybrid Organizationarrow-down

When the young founders of Airbnb asked Chip to help turn their startup into a world-class organization, he brought a core set of principles that would transform the culture of the company.

As the world adapts to the changing dynamics of hybrid work, these same principles are the key to unlocking productivity, creativity, collaboration, and culture - all while maintaining flexibility. This framework will give you the tools to amplify a growth mindset at scale, and develop talent across all levels of your organization.

Chip deconstructs how to understand the motivations of employees, customers, bosses, and investors, and use that to foster better relationships and build a more connected culture than ever before.

Disruptive Innovation: Learning How to See and Surf a Disruptionarrow-down

Chip Conley has disrupted the hospitality industry twice, once as the founder and long-time CEO of Joie de Vivre Hotels (America's second largest boutique hotel company) and again when he joined the three founders of Airbnb to help grow and lead the company to become the most valuable hospitality company in the world. Chip has identified his three rules of disruptive innovation in any industry and how start-ups as well as established companies can see the foreshadowing of a new wave on the horizon and surf that wave to competitive advantage.

Peak: How Great Companies Get Their Mojo From Maslowarrow-down

In this conversation, Chip shares Joie de Vivre's remarkable transformation while providing real world examples from other companies and showing how attendees can bring about similar changes in their work and personal lives. He explains how to understand the motivations of employees, customers, bosses, and investors, and use that understanding to foster better relationships and build an enduring and profitable corporate culture.

The Modern Elder: A New Framework for Sharing and Receiving Wisdomarrow-down

For the first time ever, we have five generations in the workplace at the same time. What would happen if we got more intentional about how we all work together? Age diversity makes companies stronger as wisdom can flow in both directions from old to young and vice versa based upon new practices that encourage mutual mentorship. 

In this conversation, Chip will disrupt how you think about teaching and learning, and share how to activate mutually-beneficial relationships between the generations of your workforce to inspire a growth mindset in your culture (not just for young hires).

Toward a Psychology of Business: Simple Truths for Creating a Culture (and Life of Happiness, Balance, and Success)arrow-down

Chip believes the most neglected fact in business is that we're all human and that business schools don't do enough to help us understand that creating peak experiences for stakeholders can create peak performance for a company. The PEAK model can be used to understand how a company can relate to relationships beyond those with employees and customers: investors, vendors, the community, and, even with yourself. As a practitioner who has used his own company (with over 3,000 employees) as a laboratory for understanding the human condition, Chip's philosophical but prescriptive approach to fulfillment and work-life balance will be very illuminating.


I love the Joie de Vivre heart icon that Chip uses to illustrate how a passionate corporate culture breeds happy employees, which leads to satisfied customers, which results in a profitable and sustainable business.

Sir Richard Branson

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