I’m typing these words a few days before finishing three months of holidays fully paid. It’s what we call in Automattic: the sabbatical.

If you’re wondering, what do you mean by a sabbatical? Well, let me tell you:

I work at Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com, Tumblr, WooCommerce, Day One, Longreads… and more. It’s a 100% distributed organization with more than 2,000 Automatticians (that’s how we like to call each other) where everyone can work from anywhere in the world.

We’re a happy bunch of enthusiasts of the Open Source and the Open Internet and I’ve had the honor and the pleasure of working with some of the best professionals in the tech world for the last 6 years and a half.

I could talk for hours about the culture of Automattic and how incredible is to work alongside some of the most talented and helpful people out there, their willingness to lend a hand any time to anyone is just part of the genes of the Automatticians, and our creed defines it perfectly:

I will never stop learning. I won’t just work on things that are assigned to me. I know there’s no such thing as a status quo. I will build our business sustainably through passionate and loyal customers. I will never pass up an opportunity to help out a colleague, and I’ll remember the days before I knew everything. I am more motivated by impact than money, and I know that Open Source is one of the most powerful ideas of our generation. I will communicate as much as possible, because it’s the oxygen of a distributed company. I am in a marathon, not a sprint, and no matter how far away the goal is, the only way to get there is by putting one foot in front of another every day. Given time, there is no problem that’s insurmountable.

The Automattic Creed

There are many benefits working here, but my favorite one is that every five years, all employees get three months of holidays fully paid, we call it: sabbatical.

During the last 6 years that I’ve been working at Automattic, I’ve read many posts of my colleagues sharing their experiences of their sabbaticals and I always had something clear: I’d try my best to enjoy it and seize every moment of it, because how many times in life are you going to have this opportunity? Not many! And believe me, what a wonderful gift ❤

As the sabbatical was getting closer, I started to think about what I wanted to do during my three months of holidays and as I love lists, I started one…

I created a to-do list with all items divided into the following sections:

  • High quality time with friends/family members
  • Traveling
  • Personal/Volunteer Projects

And I was adding new items any time that something was coming to my mind that I wanted to do but I never had the time to do.

I ended up with a list of 78 items in total.

And I’ve completed 60 items of my Sabbatical’s to-do list! 77% of my goals were achieved during my sabbatical. I consider it a good success 😉

I’ve traveled to four countries, I’ve spent high-quality time with many friends and family, I’ve been training, playing sports, started and finished several personal projects, I started playing the piano…

Automattic gave me the gift of the time, to disconnect and reconnect.

What a gift… Thank you Matt for making this possible.

And thank you to my Team Tardis (especially to Hari for stepping up) and many colleagues in the WordPress project for making it so easy for me to leave and totally disconnect from work during this time.

I’m privileged for being able to enjoy three months of sabbatical and I’m happy and ready to come back with full batteries to help accomplish our mission: Democratize Publishing and make the web a better place!


P.S.- Ah! And by the way, if you’re wondering… Automattic is always hiring!

5 comentarios sobre “My sabbatical in Automattic

  1. It’s so good to know you enjoyed your sabbatical and completed 2/3 of what was planned. I took my sabbatical last year and it was awesome too. I’m so glad for having that opportunity 🙂

    > It’s a 100% distributed organization with more than 2,000 Automatticians…

    What?! 2,000! I remember the days we joined Automattic and it was a 400 company 😱

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  2. Hey Rocio, it’s very interesting to read about your experience during your sabbatical!
    It must be stimulating to have such a long break to explore other areas of interest, to reconnect with family and friends…
    I hope you’re too busy energizing to read your blog comments! We miss your enthusiasm in the WCEU team, see ya! 😉

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