March 24, 2022
Photo: 10'000 Hours/Getty Images
Welcome back to our Workplace newsletter. Saw this tweet and was curious: Would you pay a startup consultant to give feedback on your job descriptions and make sure you’re hiring the right people? Today: Reporter Nick Statt is in SF this week for the triumphant return of the Game Developers Conference and gives us a report on the industry’s four-day workweek experiment. Plus, the worst employee ever and how much companies *actually* spend on DEI.
— Michelle Ma, reporter (email | twitter)
The pandemic has forced the game industry to radically rethink its approach to work. Game studios have been adjusting to hybrid or fully remote work, while also figuring out better ways to address long-term issues like fostering healthier cultures, retention and employee burnout.
Now, as the industry reckons with entrenched labor practices like crunch and rampant sexism and harassment, scores of smaller game-makers have started asking if there are better ways to develop video games and to place a higher priority on the human beings who make them. One clear and obvious solution that’s starting to catch fire in gaming, tech and beyond: the four-day workweek.
But it’s not just smaller studios focusing on the health of employees. Square Enix’s Eidos-Montréal, which developed last year’s Guardians of the Galaxy, and its subsidiary Eidos-Sherbrooke have adopted the four-day workweek.
My colleague Allison Levitsky is starting a new series profiling tech execs talking about their worst employee ever. To kick it off, she interviewed Andrea Brice, now the founder and chief data officer of data intelligence startup Willowfinch. But before that, at a different firm, she was a manager of a data-entry clerk, a “perfectly nice young woman who was competent, smart, but not good at her job.” Levitsky spoke to her about how she navigated the situation, as well as to the founder and CEO of an employee relations software firm about how and when to intervene with a struggling employee. (P.S. If you have a “worst employee ever” story to share, drop Allison a line at email@example.com.)
Today’s job landscape is challenging for organizations looking to recruit and retain top tech talent. Recent labor trends, many of which are fueling The Great Resignation, have shown leaders across industries that their employees are searching for more.
I have a quick, travel-related tip for you this week. Workplace editor Meg Morrone recently let me know that if you send someone your flight number in iMessage, they can preview your flight directly in the app. This is handy if you want loved ones to track your flight, or if you’re coordinating flight schedules with co-workers for a business trip.
We’re living in the age of DEI. The acronym has wormed its way into the lexicons of tech companies big and small, and you’d be hard pressed to find a corporate About Us page that doesn’t wax poetic about diversity and inclusion. HR software company Greenhouse and education technology company Everfi recently conducted a survey of HR professionals that shed light on how companies’ investments actually match up with their purported values:
Cristina Cordova has joined First Round Capital as its newest partner. Previously, she was an angel investor and, before that, the head of platforms and partnerships at Notion.Etsy has hired Kim Seymour as CHRO, joining from WW International, where she was chief people officer. Etsy’s Chief Operations, Strategy and People Officer Raina Moskowitz is also transitioning to chief operating officer.
Technology organizations need to look internally to find the talent they seek by upskilling and reskilling their existing tech workforce. For this vision to become a reality, organizations must focus on being creators, rather than consumers, of talent.
ICYMI, here was the first entry in our new Protocol Calendar Series.
LinkedIn creators are working with coaches to help them increase engagement and reach.
On Tome, workplace presentations actually look good on your phone.
This is how Microsoft plans to fill 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs.Apple is hiring more women and underrepresented leaders, plus more insights from its latest Diversity Report.
A roundup of workplace news from the farthest corners of the internet.
What it takes to actually retire by 30.
Chipmakers are feeling the labor shortage, just as Congress is debating funding for the U.S. chip business.
How to mentor in a remote workplace.
Workplaces are in denial about how much Americans have changed their relationship with work.44% of workers are looking for a new job, another sign the Great Resignation lives on …
Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a great day, see you Sunday.
This newsletter was updated to include Everfi as a survey conductor alongside Greenhouse.