Thursday, February 23, 2017

Tech Still Doesn’t Take Discrimination Seriously - WIRED

Originally published: February 20, 2017

THE TECH INDUSTRY isn’t big on dress codes, employee handbooks, or rules. The Silicon Valley management philosophy is simple: Hire talented coders, give them tools to do their jobs, and get out of their way. The best coders should be rewarded, and those who just can’t hack it should be let go.

The problem is that, all too often, workplace problems boil down to more than just code. Yesterday widely respected programmer Susan J. Fowler revealed in a blog post that she quit her job at the transportation company Uber last year after facing sexual harassment, discrimination, and, perhaps most worryingly, a corporate culture that let all that harassment and discrimination slide.

One of the most striking things about the allegations is how unsurprising they are. Uber has always had a cavalier attitude about rules and regulations, so it’s easy to imagine that attitude extending to sexual harassment and employment laws in general. But the issue goes far beyond Uber. Stories like Fowler’s are common in the tech industry, which has never quite gotten a handle on how to hold employees accountable for anything other than “performance.”

Hidden disabilities at work: 'Every day I'm fatigued and in pain' - GUARDIAN

by Frances Ryan
Originally published: February 21, 2017

I’m constantly anxious that my ‘luck’ will run out. Either in being able to work at all, or that my workplace will run out of patience and I’ll be out of a job,” says Rebecca Allen, a data analyst in London.

Allen, 30, has hypermobility syndrome – a connective tissue disease causing lax joints and muscle fibres – as well as fibromyalgia, and gut and lung problems.

Every day at work, she’s fatigued and in pain – even a tough commute can mean she’s unable to make it through the working day. But because her disability is hidden – that is, a disability that isn’t immediately apparent – she doesn’t necessarily appear disabled to her employers and colleagues. It means she’s had colleagues in previous workplaces make pointed glances at the clock when she’s had to come in later because of her health, as well as derogatory comments about her commitment to the job.

How Entrepreneurs Can Attract And Retain Talented Millennials Who Prioritize Health - FORBES

by Melissa Thompson 
Originally published: February 20, 2017

It’s no secret that as a society we’re more conscious about our health than ever before. While technology may not always be our ally in allowing us time to get to the gym -- interminable conference calls, Skype chats and emails -- we do have greater access to information. Millennials are more aware than their parents were about the dangers of smoking and drinking. We know the types of food we should avoid and that CARBS is a four-letter word. We also know that working in an uninspiring or toxic environment can be detrimental to our health.

Harmful workplace factors include: having unsupportive colleagues, an excessively demanding boss, or suffering constant ill-treatment increases risk of heart disease, depression and high blood pressure. These undesirable conditions are not exactly the perks you look for during a job hunt.

JOB RETENTION: Eager and talented young people who want to make it here - CHRONICLE HERALD

by Chantal Brine
Originally published:  February 22, 2017

Attracting and retaining young talented employees is critical to Nova Scotia’s economic future. It’s also what Venor does on a daily basis, working with hundreds of young professionals and employers — mostly entrepreneurial small-to-medium sized businesses. Through these dialogues, Venor learns of both the challenges and the opportunities ahead.

Some of the themes that emerge include:

-‘I’d love to hire students/recent graduates, but don’t know who to contact and don’t have time to attend career fairs or other events.’

-‘We don’t have the money and/or time to hire and train a young professional.’

- ‘We don’t have a team to effectively on board and train a young professional; it would take too long to get them up to speed.’

The Great Generational Shift – How Employees Are Changing - MODERN RESTAURANT MANAGEMENT

by Bruce Tulgan 
Originally published: February 21, 2017

Throughout most of history, in most societies, every new generation has come along with new attitudes and expectations that differ – at least in part – from those of previous generations. That’s why every new generation prompts a “generation gap” of sorts.

Today’s generation gap, in contrast, is about much more than a clash of styles and preferences; much more than the creative energy of youth challenging the cautious wisdom of experience; more than the new butting up against the old. The “Generational Shift” unfolding today is of historic significance, defined by the confluence of macro forces driving change at an extraordinary magnitude and pace. The Second Wave Millennials coming of age today have been shaped by those same forces of change. As such, the current generation gap is not only an important diversity issue, but also coincides with a qualitative transformation in the norms of life and work and society – at every level. Everything is changing so much and so fast that the youngest, least experienced people bring to the table a unique wisdom that comes from being in sync – much more so than older, more experienced people – with the immediate and intermediate future, like so many “canaries in the coal mine.” That’s why generational differences evident in today’s youth can serve as a powerful lens through which to understand the trajectory of today’s changing world.

How to close a gender gap: let your employees control their schedules - FINANCIAL POST

by Claire Cain Miller
Originally published: February 21, 2017

The main reason for the gender gaps at work — why women are paid less, why they’re less likely to reach the top levels of companies, and why they’re more likely to stop working after having children — is employers’ expectation that people spend long hours at their desks, research has shown.

It’s especially difficult for women because they have disproportionate responsibility for caregiving.

Flexibility regarding the time and place that work gets done would go a long way toward closing the gaps, economists say. Yet when people ask for it, especially parents, they can be penalized in pay and promotions. Social scientists call it the flexibility stigma, and it’s the reason that even when companies offer such policies, they’re not widely used.

A new job search company, Werk, is trying to address the problem by negotiating for flexibility with employers before posting jobs, so employees don’t have to.

Six Female Execs On The Early Career Advice They Wish They'd Gotten - FASTCOMPANY

Originally published: February 17, 2017

It's easy to assume that the most successful people are expert planners who knew exactly where they wanted to be at each point in their career.

That's rarely the case. Much more often, those folks were simply open to new opportunities from the very beginning—they took chances and learned to embrace what made them unique. But that doesn't mean they wouldn't have done a few things differently. I spoke with six executives at major companies like PayPal, GM, SoulCycle, and Salesforce to learn what advice they wish they'd gotten when they were younger.


"In today’s heavily prescribed, overly programmed world, it’s easy to believe—even at age 22—that you need to plan every detail of your future career," says General Motors CEO Mary Barra. But that’s not the case.