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People Geekly #18

Issue No. 18, brought to you by Culture Amp
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This is the eighteenth issue of Culture Amp's weekly email updating you on all the best #peoplegeek news around. Feel free to tweet us with your thoughts and feedback. Have you been forwarded this email? Subscribe here to get your Geekly Weekly.

In New York on Thursday? Come along to our event by registering here.

"BTW #talkpay is a tech recruiter's dream. Pretty easy to go figure out who is being undervalued"


We love feedback. We also love flexible and remote working. Bring these together and you end up an inevitable amount of feedback over email. In this article, Julius Tarng puts forward some helpful suggestions on how to make this process constructive. Everything from tweaking your tone to picking your timing (don't send emails at 2am when you're cranky). While Julius caveats that this is all about design, we think these suggestions would work with almost any feedback. Don't forget to read the comments on each paragraph. Some great insights in there!

Would you like to offer maternity leave but think it’s out of your budget? Here’s a how-to story from a startup that managed to do it. By setting a budget in advance (when they found out one of their co-workers was pregnant), the company realised that "the cost of paying for Lee’s maternity leave was much more cost-effective than losing and trying to replace a vital employee." So how did they do it? Early budget planning, planning for projects while the employee was away, and cross-training other employees. All great things to do, anyway. When the employee returned, the company encouraged everyone to have a rest.

Lets talk about pay (10 min) PICK OF THE WEEK 

The article that started #talkpay was Lauren Voswinkel's call to arms to share what we all get paid, a well-established taboo that mostly benefits organizations and discriminates against minorities. This article robustly argues we can't engage directly with these inequalities whilst they are (mostly) behind closed doors. Lauren also highlights one of the biggest barriers to transparency - disclosing your salary is considered illegal, or company practices make it effectively a dismissal offence.  If you've not been following the #talkpay hashtag on Twitter, you might also want to read this summary on The Guardian.

Pretending to work 80hr weeks (13 min)

Erin Reid summarizes her research on the expectations on men in management consulting - 80-hour weeks, weekend work and travel at a moment's notice. The response of most men to these demands? They fake that they've done it. Most alarmingly though, those that pushed for a reduction in work hours were "marginalized and penalized". One of the key problems is that leaders have often made these sacrifices themselves, and see them as a rite of passage. In the end, "passing" doesn't benefit employee or company alike.

Sam Schillace shares some of his insights into building high performance teams at Google Docs and Box. He starts with baking in a (performance) culture from the get-go, being explicit about it and then building performance improvement around it. Sam brings this all together in what he calls a rubric - "a clear, concice statement of what's expected from employees."

EVENTS (roll up, roll up):

If you're in NEW YORK this Thursday 7th May, our own amazing data scientist and organizational psychologist Jason McPherson will be chatting about ways to stop people from leaving. Sign up here.

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