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People Geekly #23

Issue No. 23, brought to you by Culture Amp
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This is the twenty-third issue of Culture Amp's weekly email updating you on all the best #peoplegeek news around.

"A bad company culture will defeat great people. A great company culture will empower and inspire people at all levels."

Jay Wilkisnson (@jaywilk)
Remote one-on-ones (3 min 45 sec)

Tessa Greenleaf from CouldPeeps says its important to them that they have open lines of communication, especially since the team is largely remote. One of the practical ways they’ve made sure this happens is by having “pair calls” with different team members each month. The goal is to create a dialogue with peers and find ways that they can help each other. The calls start with a two-question feedback loop, then sharing two positive characteristics and finally one constructive criticism. 

Inside hiring (5 min)

Internal hires outperform external hires, but 40% of internal moves involving high-potential employees end in failure. JR Keller thought it was worth investigating what was going on here. Keller set about finding answers by "analyzing the two primary ways internal hires are made: posting and sponsorship.” They found some interesting things, including that "candidates hired through internal postings outperformed sponsored internal hires on nearly every conceivable dimension of quality."

Sleep to work (7 min) PICK OF THE WEEK 

Nightowls, early birds, teenagers. We all recognize different sleep patterns, but we rarely think about energy levels during the workday. Christopher Barnes summarizes the latest body of research into circadian rhythyms and how they effect work, and has some practical tips, e.g. 3pm is bad for a deadline, but great for a nap. Got a hardworking employee in the office late at night? Be careful not to equate working late with being more productive. The goal should be "energized, thriving employees", whatever their work schedule.

While this article focusses on the US, which ranks lowest among developed countries when it comes to family policies, there’s a good argument to be made that men across the board come up against gender stereotypes when they try and take paternity leave. This is despite the fact that “men are spending more time caring for their children — nearly 3 times as many hours per week today than in 1965.” Things are changing, but that should extend to the opportunity to take time off following the arrival of a new baby (and including foster children.) New research confirms that "good things happen when dads take paternity leave.” This article interviews 15 different men on the issue, and it’s hard to to argue against its simple conclusion: men, take your paternity leave. What can your company do to make sure that more men do just that?

Happy workers :-) (40 min)

Here, William Davies stares down modern work, productivity and the quest for 'engagement'. As Davies posits, "by the 1980s, an employee’s customer care, service ethic, and enthusiasm were not simply mental resources that existed to help churn out more products: They were the product. The importance of employee happiness and psychological engagement becomes all the greater once corporations are in the business of selling ideas, experiences, and services." If employees are the product, how do we make them great, and lots of them? Lots to mull over here.


In San Francisco on June 26Culture Summit is a one day conference that brings together successful entrepreneurs, leaders, and culture experts to share their experiences and insights on building strong cultures that lead to successful companies. Speakers come from companies such as LinkedIn, Infusionsoft, Culture Amp, Medium, and Nitro who are known for their extraordinary cultures and productive teams.  

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