Field Guide to Caring for a Developer (2.0)

2b951ffdb5c1d1a40e219a719b29cf8b?s=47 Allison Tarr
September 23, 2017

Field Guide to Caring for a Developer (2.0)

Surrounded by constant workflow advancements, new frameworks, and version updates, tech culture often makes exhaustion a badge of honour. How do we best take care of ourselves when faced with obstacles like burnout, isolation, and uncertainty?

Whether you’re a remote employee, freelancer, or working within a larger tech team, the issues of mental health are important. In this talk, we’ll examine the state of mental health awareness within tech and discuss strategies and resources to improve it on both a personal and community level.

2b951ffdb5c1d1a40e219a719b29cf8b?s=128

Allison Tarr

September 23, 2017
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Transcript

  1. FIELD GUIDE TO CARING FOR A DEVELOPER WORDCAMP SALT LAKE

    CITY 2017
  2. TODAY’S JOURNEY ◇ The Stats ◇ The Why(s) ◇ How

    we can work towards change as a community
  3. I’M ALLISON. Feminist. Writer. Mental health advocate. Front-end developer. @allisonplus

  4. CONTENT DISCLAIMER aka “You Do You”

  5. WHY THIS MATTERS TO ME

  6. HULA HOOPER. CANADIAN. MENTAL HEALTH ADVOCATE. FEMINIST. FRONT-END DEVELOPER. ASPIRING

    BANJO PLAYER. DAUGHTER. WRITER. TRANSPLANTED CALIFORNIAN. VEGETARIAN. AVID READER. DOLLY PARTON FAN. INFJ. INTROVERT. PARTNER. SISTER. AUNT.
  7. THE STATS

  8. 1 in 5 people living with a mental health issue

  9. Over 500,000 people miss work each week due to mental

    health issues.
  10. $50+ billion estimated annual cost of absenteeism + lost productivity

  11. WHY DON’T WE TALK ABOUT IT? ...being treated differently ...exclusion

    ...judgement ...being labelled ...being viewed as less competent
  12. {AWKWARD AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION SECTION}

  13. Has your employer ever formally discussed mental health (for example

    as part of a wellness campaign or other official communication)?
  14. ...discussing a mental health disorder with your employer would have

    negative consequences? ...discussing a physical health disorder with your employer would have negative consequences? DO YOU THINK THAT...
  15. WHY THIS APPLIES TO TECH

  16. THE TECH INDUSTRY AS A WORKPLACE ◇ Compressed deadlines ◇

    Ambitious goal setting ◇ Constant review and approvals ◇ Communicational chaos ◇ Independent work ◇ Expectations of being available outside of hours
  17. I totally understand all the latest technologies, systems and workflows

    within my industry. —No One
  18. WHAT IS BURNOUT? Physical, mental or emotional exhaustion caused by

    long-term stress.
  19. TECH INDUSTRY can make this seem like the status quo.

    THE
  20. GOOD JOB RESOURCES ◇ participation in decision making ◇ task

    variety ◇ job automony ◇ potential for qualification ◇ support from colleagues/family/peers ◇ lack of social support ◇ low job control ◇ poor performance feedback ◇ time pressure POOR JOB RESOURCES
  21. THERE ARE WAYS OF KEEPING UP THAT DON’T INVOLVE BURNOUT.

  22. STRATEGY SUGGESTIONS

  23. PUT ON YOUR OXYGEN MASK FIRST ◇ Setting boundaries ◇

    Know the perks + benefits available to you and your rights as an employee. ◇ Take your vacation ◇ Communicate empathy. ◇ Improve your self care strategies
  24. 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY PRODUCTIVE GIVING* 1. Prioritize the help

    requests that come your way — say yes when it matters most and no when you need to. 2. Give in ways that play to your interests and strengths to preserve your energy and provide greater value. 3. Distribute the giving load more evenly — refer requests to others when you don’t have the time or skills, & be careful not to reinforce gender biases and who helps and how. 4. Secure your oxygen mask first —you’ll help others more effective if you don’t neglect your own needs. 5. Amplify your impact by looking for ways to help multiple people with a single act of generosity. 6. Chunk your giving into dedicated days or blocks of time rather than sprinkling it throughout the week. You’ll be more effective — and more focused. 7. Learn to spot takers, and steer clear of them. They’re a drain on your energy, not to mention a performance hazard. *Adam Grant & Reb Rebele, Harvard Business Review
  25. FREELANCE STRATEGIES ◇ Setting aside time for learning (½ a

    day every Friday, etc.) ◇ Client boundaries re: communication ◇ Join a biz support group or ‘power pod’
  26. EMPLOYED STRATEGIES ◇ #5ftf ◇ Lunch n’ Learns or ongoing

    training sessions ◇ Create a dialogue with HR + bosses ◇ Extracurricular activities not revolving around work or drinking ◇ Enforcing reasonable work hours ◇ Providing clear expectations
  27. WHAT CAN WE DO AS A COMMUNITY?

  28. EMBRACE NEURODIVERSITY CHALLENGE THE STIGMA AGAINST TALKING ABOUT FEELINGS REDUCE

    STIGMA BY EDUCATION AND DISCLOSURE SUPPORT OTHERS IN A SUSTAINABLE FASHION
  29. https://osmihelp.org Open Sourcing Mental Illness

  30. DON’T ACCEPT THINGS IF THEY’RE NOT WORKING FOR YOU. YOU

    DESERVE TO BE HAPPY AND HEALTHY.
  31. WE’RE NOT JUST CODE, WE’RE COMMUNITY.

  32. ◇ Open Source Mental Illness: osmihelp.org ◇ WPHugs: https://wphugs.org/ ◇

    IMAlive (online crisis network): https://www.imalive.org/ ◇ National Alliance on Mental Illness: http://www.mentalhealthcommission.ca/English/national-standard ◇ Mental Health First Aid: http://www.mentalhealthfirstaid.ca/ RESOURCES
  33. ANY QUESTIONS? @allisonplus hello@allisontarr.com Presentation template by SlidesCarnival & Photographs

    by Unsplash