Learn more about our amazing speakers and sponsors at our July 2021 virtual summit Diversity Reboot: Tech for Social Impact, three days of conversations and panels plus an interactive virtual career fair.
Our Tech for Social Impact summit was a massive success! PowerToFly was thrilled to welcome organizations from different parts of the world with mission-driven motives who are striving for a social impact in their society. From the Digital Divide to Digital Addictions, we covered it all! If you tuned in, thank you! And if you missed the summit or would like to re-watch any of the talks, those conversations are now available to watch for free on PowerToFly.
We want to extend a HUGE thanks to our VIP sponsor Helm and our Gold sponsors Unstoppable Domains, UnitedHealth Group, Autodesk, Service Now, and Smartsheet, Plus, don't forget to visit our Merch Store and grab yourself some PowerToFly apparel. 100% of the proceeds from our sales will be going to TransTech Social, supporting transgender people in tech.
Finally, registration for our September summit: Early Career Connections & Mid-Career Pivots is now open! Whether you're launching your career or revamping it, don't miss this free opportunity to connect with companies looking for interns, entry-level professionals, career pivoters, and those returning to work. Register for free here.
Our VIP Sponsor
Helm works with visionary leaders who seek to create a more equitable world. Their tools give elite operators power to shape campaigns, organizations, and movements.
Their partners gain access to analysis, briefings, data, and tools optimized for long-term advocacy.
At Helm, they seek to understand human civic behavior and equip organizers with their tools and insights. Their work is urgent.
Issue advocates and organizers are their inspiration. Building with and for them is their mission.
They are assembling a team that understands, shares values with, learns alongside, and stands with the people who are doing the work to change the nation. They are seeking team members who want to see a more equitable future in their lifetime, and who have the passion and skills to help us get there.
While they work toward creating that future, they are simultaneously building a diverse team that reflects the true nature of their nation; and cultivating an inclusive environment in which everyone can thrive. They know that in order to succeed, they must be able to do both.
Our Gold Sponsors
Unstoppable Domains is bringing user-controlled identity to 3 billion+ internet users by issuing domain names on the blockchain. These domains allow users to replace cryptocurrency addresses with human-readable names, host decentralized websites, and much more.
By selling these domains direct to consumers for a one-time fee, we are making a product that will change cryptocurrency and shape the future of the decentralized web by providing users control over their identity and data.
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Their mission is to help people live healthier lives and to help make the health system work better for everyone. A Fortune 6 company, they're focused on helping people live healthier lives while making the health system work better for everyone. They seek to empower people with the information, guidance and tools to make personal health choices. They work harder and they aim higher. They expect more from themselves and each other.
And, at the end of the day, they're doing a lot of good for more than 142 million people worldwide.
Their biggest point of differentiation is their people - and the collective talent, energy, intelligence and drive our force of 305,000 individuals around the world bring to our mission every single day. With their every action, interaction and intention that demonstrates the five fundamental values that guide everything they do: Integrity, Compassion, Relationships, Innovation, Performance.
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They make software for people who make things. If you've ever driven a high-performance car, admired a towering skyscraper, used a smartphone, or watched a great film, chances are you've experienced what millions of Autodesk customers are doing with their software. Autodesk gives you the power to make anything.
They have over 100 offices in over 38 countries around the world. They are headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area and have more than 9000 employees worldwide. They'd love for you to join us.
Why work with them? Their culture and mission are what differentiates them and makes Autodesk such a great place to work. Their employee engagement scores are best in class and we are more committed than ever to ensuring their culture drives their vision of helping people imagine, design and make a better world. Authenticity, humility, and impact are just a few aspects of their culture that makes Autodesk a great place to work.
Bring your authentic self to work and thrive. At Autodesk, they're changing the conversation about diversity. Diversity goes beyond having a group of people who are different- it's when these differences are valued and integrated into every part of the business that the magic begins. Diversity fuels new ideas, creativity, and business growth. They are constantly exploring new ways to integrate all dimensions of diversity across their employees, customers, partners, and communities. Diversity allows them to create and innovate leading edge products, develop an unmatched level of customer focus, and collaborate effectively. Through the power of diversity, their ultimate goal is to expand the opportunity of anyone to imagine, design, and make a better world.
At ServiceNow, they make the world of work, work better for people. They deliver digital workflows that create great experiences and unlock productivity.
With over ~6,900 customers, they serve approximately 80% of the Fortune 500, and they're on the 2020 list of FORTUNE World's Most Admired Companies.® This is the future of work.
Learn more on Life at Now blog and hear from their employees about their experiences working at ServiceNow.
In 2005, Smartsheet was founded on the idea that teams and millions of people worldwide deserve a better way to deliver their very best work. Today, the company delivers a leading cloud-based platform for work execution, empowering organizations to plan, capture, track, automate, and report on work at scale, resulting in more efficient processes and better business outcomes.
Smartsheet went public on the New York Stock Exchange in April 2018 and currently enables collaboration, better decision making, and accelerated innovation for over 76,000 domain-based customers in 190 countries, including 96 of the Fortune 100.
Smartsheet is a passionate team of 1500+ employees spanning offices in Seattle, Boston, London, Edinburgh and Sydney.
For your next book club:
Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Productive and Creative Self by Manoush Zomorodi
In 2015 Manoush Zomorodi, creator of WNYC's popular podcast and radio show Note to Self, led tens of thousands of listeners through an experiment to help them unplug from their devices, get bored, jump-start their creativity, and change their lives. Bored and Brilliant builds on that experiment to show us how to rethink our gadget use to live better and smarter in this new digital ecosystem. Manoush explains the connection between boredom and original thinking, exploring how we can harness boredom's hidden benefits to become our most productive and creative selves without totally abandoning our gadgets in the process.
Grounding the book in the neuroscience and cognitive psychology of "mind wandering" what our brains do when we're doing nothing at all―Manoush includes practical steps you can take to ease the nonstop busyness and enhance your ability to dream, wonder, and gain clarity in your work and life. The outcome is mind-blowing. Unplug and read on.
The Deeper the Roots: A Memoir of Hope and Home by Michael Tubbs
"Don't tell nobody our business," Michael Tubbs's mother often told him growing up. For Michael, that meant a lot of things: don't tell anyone about the day-to-day struggle of being Black and broke in Stockton, CA. Don't tell anyone the pain of having a father incarcerated for 25 years to life. Don't tell anyone about living two lives, the brainy bookworm and the kid with the newest Jordans. And also don't tell anyone about the particular joys of growing up with three "moms"―a Nana who never let him miss church, an Auntie who'd take him to the library any time, and a mother, "She-Daddy", who schooled him in the wisdom of hip-hop and taught him never to take no for an answer.
So for a long time Michael didn't tell anyone his story, but as he went on to a scholarship at Stanford and an internship in the Obama White House, he began to realize the power of his experience, the need for his perspective in the halls of power. By the time he returned to Stockton to become, in 2016 at age 26, its first Black mayor and the youngest-ever mayor of a major American city, he knew his story meant something.
The Deeper the Roots is a memoir astonishing in its candor, voice, and clarity of vision. Tubbs shares with us the city that raised him, his family of badass women, his life-changing encounters with Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama, the challenges of governing in the 21st century and everything in between―en route to unveiling his compelling vision for America rooted in his experiences in his hometown.
The Big Letdown: How Medicine, Big Business, and Feminism Undermine Breastfeeding by Kimberly Seals Allers
Pediatricians say you should but it's okay if you don't. The hospital says, "Breast is best," but sends you home with formula "just in case." Your sister-in-law says, "Of course you should!" Your mother says, "I didn't, and you turned out just fine." Celebrities are photographed nursing in public, yet breastfeeding mothers are asked to cover up in malls and on airplanes. Breastfeeding is a private act, yet everyone has an opinion about it. How did feeding our babies get so complicated?
Journalist and infant health advocate Kimberly Seals Allers breaks breastfeeding out of the realm of "personal choice" and shows our broader connection to an industrialized food system that begins at birth, the fallout of feminist ideals, and the federal policies that are far from family friendly. The Big Letdown uncovers the multibillion-dollar forces battling to replace mothers' milk and the failure of the medical establishment to protect infant health. Weaving together research and personal stories with original reporting on medicine, big pharma, and hospitals, Kimberly Seals Allers shows how mothers and babies have been abandoned by all the forces that should be supporting families from the start--and what we can do to help.
Goodbye, Status Quo: Reimagining the Landscape of Innovation by Dr. Joan Fallon
In Goodbye, Status Quo, Dr. Joan Fallon equips her readers with the tools to be agents of change: as entrepreneurs, leaders, and individuals. No matter where you come from or who you are, you can be an agent of change. If you are setting out to change the world--great, she affirms--just keep in mind that change must start with you.
As a company founder, Dr. Fallon faced many obstacles. Some of the greatest ones came from how other people saw her. A woman in her fifties with a warm, approachable manner, she didn't fit the typical entrepreneur profile. Now as a respected business leader, doctor, and academic who sits on the boards of numerous non-profits and is frequently asked to mentor others, Joan is driven to share what she has learned and the perspectives that brought her success.
She is also fascinated by the subject of change. What are the impediments that keep leaders and individuals from changing the world, or even just changing themselves, and how can they be overcome? What is it about you that holds you, your job, or your company back from changing?
Joan Fallon believes that deductive reasoning in addition to the typical inductive reasoning and other science-based approaches allow us to move past the reactive responses that leave us stuck, unable to innovate and make change. Fear-based thinking rules in many sectors today--in business, politics, even relationships. And fear is the fundamental factor that holds us back from embracing change.
Goodbye, Status Quo blends lessons from Joan's own entrepreneurial experiences and scientific observations to give readers informative and actionable advice on the topics of entrepreneurship, innovation, and making change. Each chapter offers pithy advice that taps into business, medicine, philosophy, and even baseball.
No matter your background, experience, or personal struggles, you can change the world--if you are willing to first change yourself.
Learn about the other companies that joined us to make this Tech for Social Impact a success!
In the “Great Resignation,” an estimated 47 million employees (and counting) voluntarily quit their jobs. The job market still hasn’t recovered from the unprecedented “quit rate” of 3.3% at the Great Resignation’s peak. Now, about 50% of the workforce are “quiet quitters” according to a Gallup poll — meaning, half of workers are disengaged at work and do only the minimum required of their job.
Having engaged talent is a competitive advantage for companies in today’s work environment. Replacing an employee who’s handed in their two-weeks notice can, after all, cost your company 21% of the employee’s annual salary. Employee retention strategies — ones that go beyond a box of donuts in the breakroom — are key to keeping workers engaged in the workplace. But given that overly played-out retention tactics can be ineffective at best and make your company look insincere at worst, it’s important to prioritize the right strategies. To that end, let’s go over some new and improved employee retention strategies that you may not have tried yet.
In this article, you'll find:
- Why employee retention strategies fail
- The best employee retention strategies
- Your employee retention strategy is your DEI initiative
Why employee retention strategies fail
There are plenty of employee retention strategy examples out there, but efforts can fall short. For your employee retention strategies project to be successful, you need to avoid these four common pitfalls.
1. Not delivering on promises. If you say you’re going to do something, follow up on it. Consistency is key to building employee retention strategies. Don’t ask employees to be honest about how they're feeling at work and then ignore their input. Or worse, promise big reform and fall short with token changes.
2. No trust. Studies indicate that “quiet quitting” is largely due to the relationship between employee and boss. Managers need the time, skills, and training to build solid relationships with staff. There are resource forums for people leaders to share ideas. Using tried-and-true best practices is the best strategy to build trust.
3. Siloed initiatives. Employee retention strategies can’t just live in HR. The moment they become siloed within one department or position, they fail. Employee retention strategies need to be a priority in every department and at every level.
4. No resources. Employee retention strategies need resources. To put it plainly, unfunded initiatives don’t work. Employees should be compensated for extra work such as sitting on an employee retention committee or putting together a workplace social. Likewise, pay raises and compensation should be a central part of the conversation. Remember, one of the main issues for quiet quitters is doing extra work for no extra pay.
The best employee retention strategies for 2022
With the don’ts out of the way, let’s move on to the best employee retention strategies you can start implementing today.
Listen to your employees
Well-run companies spend time and effort collecting feedback and customer satisfaction information. But what about employees? Managers need to ask, “how’s my driving?” Having data is critical to understanding how your employees are affected and making the necessary changes in order for employee retention strategies to take off. Send out an anonymous workplace survey asking about stress levels, feelings of creativity, people’s sense of inclusion, and how connected they are with their managers. If you’re not sure what to measure, start with a couple in-depth interviews. See what people want to talk about. The responses in the interviews will give you the basis for your wider survey.
If you ask your employees to be honest in giving feedback, management needs to be honest and transparent too. Acknowledge publicly the challenges the company faces based on what your employees have told you. This is the first step in accountability. Be transparent about compensation, pay raises, and benefits. Did you realize it is perfectly legal for employees to openly discuss compensation? This traditional taboo is becoming a common water cooler conversation. Social media is informing workers how to advocate for themselves. Meet them where they are. Actions speak louder than words.
Recognize and reward people, not just numbers
Over 1 in 5 employees does not feel valued at work. Feeling valued means knowing that your work is worthwhile and desirable. Watching the same sales people get rewarded for hitting their numbers again and again can be demoralizing for those who go comparatively unrecognized. Know your team and what they’re working on. Openly celebrate different kinds of triumphs, big and small, and be specific when you do. Helping people feel seen takes more than a generic “good job.”
Be flexible about work
Rethink how, where, and how long we do work. Research shows that 52% of workers prefer a hybrid remote-office work model. Employees even prefer it over a 10% pay raise. Employers must respond to this need as part of honing effective employee retention strategies.
And, as far as flexibility goes, time ownership is a massive benefit to offer employees — including by enabling them to work fewer days. Iceland is a leader in experimenting with the 4-day work week. Icelandic companies found it reduced burnout while improving work-life balance. Consider flexible arrangements that have proven results like these. Imagine how teams can be ambassadors for the company when they enjoy a new normal.
Employees that can’t see a clear career path within their company will look elsewhere to grow. The longer an employee stagnates in a position, the more their likelihood of leaving increases. Managers need to regularly work with each employee to envision their growth. Movement can be within their same position or laterally, as well. Give employees a discretionary budget for ongoing education and skills enhancement. Encourage projects and rotations with different departments to learn new skills.
Dust off that DEIB initiative
The best employee retention strategies are ones that are formed through a DEIB lens. DEIB strategies can be innovative for employee retention, as they (should) focus on all the things that make everyone supported, safe, and valued in the workplace. DEIB is, after all, not about making special accommodations for marginalized people; it’s about making the workplace better for everyone.
Your best employee retention strategy is a strategic DEIB initiativeDEIB initiatives make apt springboards for a number of successful employee retention strategies by listening to talent, creating custom work environments, and making employees across identities feel valued. Focus your efforts on DEIB, and employee retention will be one of many positive outcomes. PowerToFly has expert DEIB consultants that can help you jump start your DEIB-informed employee retention plan.
💎 Want to thrive as a customer success manager? Watch the video to the end to get some advice on how to do it.
📼Every customer success team has to follow some steps to achieve efficiency. Play this video to get three top tips that every manager in the SaaS industry should keep in mind. You'll hear from Miki Lager, Director of Customer Success at Tackle, who shares her own experience and knowledge.
📼 Customer familiarity for success. Tip #1: Know your customer. Understand their business. There are three steps in knowing how to navigate that. First, don't make it so operational. Build a true relationship with the client. Understand who are their competitors, what are the challenges they're facing, what's their true mission at heart, and how are they hoping to achieve that. Next, truly understand who the core team is that you should be working with. And finally, make sure to understand their key strategic and revenue goals.
📼Achieve customer success by delegating. Tip #2: Co-manage your customer. Not one person owns the client relationship at your company. Lead with others. Make sure to bring other stakeholders in, so that you can make sure the customer is on their path to success and that they can scale with your business solution. Team up with sales. Build a really strong relationship with your support team. Partner with the product team. The customer needs to understand where your business is headed in the future quarters so that they can plan accordingly, but also for your product team to then understand where the customer's product roadmap is headed, so you can align on strategy and best practices for that customer.
Customer Roadmap To Success - Tip #3: Define A Customer Journey
Have a defined customer journey. If the customer doesn't know where they're heading, it's going to cause some problems. Give them a clear roadmap to success. You can always adjust milestones as needed, based on different goals and different initiatives that you're working on with them. Once you have the customer journey defined, you can figure out which milestones align with the growth strategy the customer has in mind.
📨 Are you interested in joining Tackle? They have open positions! To learn more, click here.
Get to Know Miki Lager
She’s passionate about building client success teams for rapidly growing SaaS organizations. She’s been a leader at small to medium-sized companies, supporting the life cycle of startups through acquisition, and integration. If you are interested in a career at Tackle, you can connect with Miki on LinkedIn. Don’t forget to mention this video!
More About Tackle
Tackle enables software companies to accelerate and operationalize the use of Cloud Marketplaces like AWS, Microsoft, Google Cloud, and Red Hat, without the need for significant engineering resources. Their platform and team come together to make it easier for customers to build, grow, and scale their Marketplace businesses. Tackle was born and built as a remote organization and welcomes others who believe remote companies are the way companies will be built into the future. They believe that everyone has an opportunity to learn and grow in their community.
Nestlé would like to invite you to their Supply Chain virtual recruiting info session on September 29th from 4-5PM EST. Sign up for this event with leaders from our Supply Chain team to get an insider’s view on what it’s like to work at one of Gartner’s top-ranked supply chains for 2022 and the world’s largest food and beverage organization!
To say that Nazanin (Nazy) Brown and her family lead active lives is a bit of an understatement.
“We've got four young children and all of them are in multiple sports throughout the school year, as well as the summer,” she explains. “My husband and I are both coaches, so a lot of our time goes from work to home, out to the field to coach or watch games, and then back home for showers, dinner, and bed.”
With an always-on-the-go home life, it was important to Nazy to have a career that is stimulating but also allows her to be present in the lives of her children.
We sat down with Nazy to learn how she has mastered work-life balance as a Contracting Officer within the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency while she keeps her busy household running smoothly.
From Crime TV Fan to Special Agent
At a young age, Nazy loved crime TV shows, which influenced her choice to study forensic psychology. She went on to earn a master’s degree in the subject, where she got some exposure to federal government agencies.
“During my master's degree, we had a lot of recruiters come to our program,” she recounts. “One of the recruiters from an intelligence agency told us that they often hired people from our program as special agents.”
Nazy is also fluent in Farsi, and in addition to her choice of master's program, this made her an ideal candidate for many agencies.
“I began interviewing for special agent roles based on my Farsi skills,” she reveals. “I got a few job offers, and I landed a job as an entry-level contract specialist in the private sector.”
Working for a government contractor, Nazy quickly advanced in her career and eventually became a Senior Contracting Negotiator for Lockheed Martin — and she was loving it.
“I just really liked it and thought it was a great field to be in,” she says.
And while her career advanced, so did her personal life. She became a young mother with increasing responsibilities at home, which led her to be more mindful of where she was dedicating her time.
“At that point, I was putting in so many hours — it's not a 40-hour work week,” she admits. “It wasn't uncommon for me to sometimes work weekends, especially during proposal season.”
As Nazy continued to pile on the overtime, she saw that she wasn’t able to be the mom she wanted to be.
“I wanted to be able to cut work off when I'm at home,” she recalls. “I didn't want to be that mom that comes home and is on her laptop. This was when I realized that having a job that is strictly limited to just 40 hours a week would be best for our family.”
A Parent-Compatible Workplace
Through friends, Nazy learned more about working in the public service and realized that not only would she not have to work overtime, but it would also allow her to work close to her children.
“Many agencies have onsite daycares,” she notes. “I knew that would help so much with commuting and my stress level, as well as the cost. That was my number one reason to jump into the federal government.”
So, Nazy applied for a role that looked interesting and soon found herself working as a Contract Specialist in the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. The onsite daycare took in her oldest, who was then a toddler, and promised a spot to her second child, who was on the way.
“Having my children onsite with me instead of having to drop them off in another part of the city before work every day pretty much changed my entire life,” she reflects.
With her childcare issues solved and a manageable number of working hours, Nazy was able to focus more on her career development and explore her options. It was her husband, who works in the Intelligence Community (IC), who convinced her to consider switching to intelligence.
“My husband told me that the IC is just a different animal, and he was right. The contracting is different. The mission is amazing. So I decided to look into the IC,” she says.
Applying for roles in the IC required her to rework her entire application package, but her preparation paid off when she landed a role as a Contracting Officer at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA).
“Since I've come to the IC, I've been able to broaden my skills,'' remarks Nazy. “It's an entirely different contract writing system, and the IC’s mission and impact are far greater in size and scope, which has really expanded my knowledge. I've learned so much in the three years that I've been here,” she says.
The Secrets to Work-Life Balance for Working Parents
Over the past two and a half years, working from home became the norm for some parents. For Nazy, this was not an option because of the sensitive nature of the data she handles at NGA — and she actually prefers it this way.
“I like the fact that I can get my work done without interruptions from my kids. And when I go home, I take my lanyard off, hang it up, and I go right into mom mode,” she says.
For other parents looking to have this same work-life balance, Nazy offers the following tips:
- Look for jobs with short commutes. Commuting to work for an hour each way might not seem like a lot in the beginning, but over time it can take a toll”, Nazy warns. “Try to get everything set up in your local area as close as you can. In an online job search, set the parameters to five or ten miles from home, max.”
- Find an organization that offers practical support to working parents. “I don't think a lot of people realize that many government agencies offer onsite childcare,” she shares. “I've had four young children who all went through them and I have nothing but good things to say about them. So consider an employer that offers this, instead of the commercial child care centers, which are double the price.”
- Have food prep on point. Between work and her children’s sports activities, Nazy can’t cook something from scratch every night of the week. “I start the week on prepped meals. By Thursday, we're finishing everything that’s in the fridge, and then on Friday we order something or go out to eat,”
- Take advantage of employer wellness offerings. “You need to take care of yourself as a mom, '' she advises. “NGA gives us three hours a week for physical fitness training, pilates, or yoga classes, which are all provided at work. Taking advantage of that during the work day is so much easier than trying to work out at home.”