A couple of links to bookmarks we provided in our panel handouts:
The panel itself went pretty well. We each talked about some of our own experiences at companies (how culture and expectations of common knowledge, e.g., sports analogies or war/”crush” language, can engage or alienate different employees), job ads we’d found off-putting (exclusive language or red flags of bad management), and what we liked to see in job ads (what differentiates the company: lots claim “great culture”, so that’s not enough). The Q&A session was interesting, too. There were about 30 people in the audience, and I think the panel title and the tone of our conversation helped keep the Q&A from getting intense, for the most part. One person in the audience did put words in my mouth (gendered, combative language I hadn’t used), but my co-panelists had my back. *They* answered, and I steered towards other topics, prompting more questions, and we were able to move on. Several of the audience wanted more advice about how to attract good candidates. Noah, Jer, and I talked more about how it’s nice to see that a company has a sense of fun, but it’s soooo easy to say/imply things you don’t mean, when using humor, so again, try to show why your company would be attractive beyond the glitter (free sodas not enough). This didn’t really satisfy those people in the audience — of course, some companies don’t really HAVE a clear message/vision about why they’re exceptional as an employer.
Speaking of which, I was pleased by the in-person orientation and online training my new employer provided this week. They really emphasize the *strength* a company obtains from having, and respecting, many different perspectives — more ideas, better feedback, and better teamwork. It was clear to me that someone who put those materials together was familiar with the issues we addressed in our panel and further issues covered by the links. It seems promising.