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People Geekly #56

Issue No. 56, brought to you by Culture Amp
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This is the fifty-sixth issue of Culture Amp's weekly email updating you on all the best #peoplegeek news around.

 Tweet of the week (2.5 sec)

"Employee engagement is about creating a culture of listening and empowering employees to be the best they can be."

francois guay  (@GuayFrancois)
Penguin scraps degree requirement (3 min)

In an effort to recruit candidates from more diverse backgrounds, publishing giant Penguin Random House UK has decided to scrap its degree requirement for employment. Neil Morrison, group HR director, UK and international, says, "We want to attract the best people to help grow and shape the future of our company, regardless of their background - and that means that we need to think and act differently. Simply, if you're talented and you have potential, we want to hear from you." He went on to say that the company believes having people from different backgrounds with different perspectives will help build a better company that will publish the best books, and a broader reader appeal.

Hiring for purpose (3 min)

The latest hiring trend has innovative companies hiring for purpose rather than skill. This can be trickier as purpose-hiring involves finding candidates who actively work on self-improvement, successfully advocate for their own needs, comfortably embrace change and can engage senior management. These things are slightly harder to see in a candidate than the traditional skillset. Orgs like LinkedIn, Redfin and the YWCA are turning to purpose-hiring over skill-hiring with the hopes that high potential, adaptive candidates will be successful additions. 

Interested in attending a People Geekup? We're running events in New York, Chicago, Toronto, Austin, London and Sydney. Get your tickets here.
Letting people go (4.5 min)

Letting people go from your company is never easy for anyone. But there are some things a manager can do to make it as painless as possible. CEO Maren Kate Donovan talks about the fall of Zirtual, and Jason Freeman, Co-founder of 42Floors also discusses his decision, preparation and ultimately process of letting his people go. Chris Misken of Demand Media offers several steps to help make the unpleasant task a little easier, especially in a smaller company where people are not just coworkers, but also friends.

CEO swap (7.5 min)

In 2013, Rand Fishkin, CEO of Moz, and Wil Reynolds, CEO of SEER Interactive swapped professional lives as an experiment to learn more about each other’s companies and about themselves. The pair were already friends but found it fascinating as well as difficult at times, to assume the other’s identity. What they did learn, however, was that their teams were trusting of its members. They were able to see mistakes they’d made along the way, when the other would do a task better. The duo would recommend the experiment in learning to others but warn that results may vary. 

Many organizations think a restructure will fix the company culture, but this is not the case. Often senior management will use restructures to avoid dealing with culture rather than creating a better culture. Structure is a reflection of the company culture, but that doesn't mean restructuring will make your culture right. In order to fix culture, managers need to be able to openly discuss how things are done at the organization. They also have to look at the current culture and critique it. 


We've got a lot of People Geekups planned for 2016. If you’d like to host a People Geekup in your city in 2016, reply to this email and we will be in touch.

Get your ticket for:
New York on Jan 26th
Chicago on Jan 27th.
Toronto on Jan 28th.
Austin on Feb 4th.
London on Feb 9th.
Sydney on Feb 9th.

If any of the events are sold out, make sure to grab a waitlist ticket as we're looking to expand some of the venues.

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