How to make the best employees stay and attract IT talent? Just make sure that there is a good culture with a human approach.
During my time working at Predica, I’ve had a chance to understand the significance of values and sincerity in daily work. This is not an ASAP-driven corporate culture, but a bunch of people who know that we are a team and there are goals to achieve. And I am sure that this human-oriented culture was the main indicator which helped me to follow my path from Junior, through Consultant and Senior to Principal in three and a half years.
Be a human
Taking part in the interview, I was surprised how easy-going were the people I met. It was obvious that they were looking for somebody who fits the organization and organizational values. A self-managed and optimistic employee is always better than one without the hard-working attitude and motivation. Many times we hired people not for their skills, but for their potential. Coding or tools are just another skill to get, but attitude is not something to train or learn in a month.
Being human at Predica means building trust. We work in small teams, we know each other, and the whole organization is flat. It is neither a problem nor a challenge to have a chat with CEO, share an idea or tell about a problem. And with trust goes flexibility. There are super-performers at Predica, and there are parents, who have to slow down for some time and take care of kids. No problem, as long as everybody is flexible.
Challenge everybody, challenge yourself
It is not a surprise that IT is like rowing upstream – the moment you stop, you go backward. Continuous development is a must, and both engineers and business development teams are aware of that.
There are a lot of courses, but the only real development is through taking part in projects. That’s at least what I think and at Predica it proved to be effective.
From my first days at work, I was thrown in the deep end. To be honest, I was concerned, but I was given the support I needed, and people trusted me. One of them was my mentor who challenged me and believed in my self-driven attitude. That is why I succeeded. In fact, all employees here have a mentor – someone who helps to set goals and acquire new skills.
When I started working here, I knew that there are the best experts on Microsoft technologies. But they weren’t distant stars in the firmament – one of them became my mentor. And now I have two employees to mentor myself. Another great challenge to overcome and skills to gain.
There is another special thing about mentoring at Predica. It is hard to expect that someone who has the general experience but without a specific focus, will have a perfect plan for their future. With bigger experience, the mentor helps employee follow the chosen way or achieve goals. It is not a boss – rather someone between a teacher and an older colleague. A senpai, somehow.
But when you know your path, he is the person to help you follow it. Mentor will believe that you can go the extra mile. It is great to have a professional just believe in you.
Set a goal and perform
All these things would be nothing without interesting clients and good projects. The culture of challenges encourages me to work hard and improve my practical skills.
I know that my work is useful, needed and necessary. I know that I cannot screw up because there are people – customers, peers or another team – who need my job and my expertise. What’s more, I can see the effects of my work – clients are satisfied with the quality provided and I often get valuable feedback.
Another special thing is high pressure on self-management. The best example of trust and culture of self-challenging is the way Predica manages tasks and work to be done. There’s no micro-management and manual control over employee’s time. There is a deadline, and it is fully up to me (or any other employee) where and when it is going to be done, all due to our culture and special time management system (LeanTS). And it proved to be super-effective.
Learn something new every day
At Predica, there is no strict barrier between business and technical business units. People who want to challenge themselves with selling and contacting clients are free to do so if they gain the necessary experience. All our sales representatives are experts and have a great knowledge about the services we provide.
And that was what I had to do after my first business trips to the Gulf area and Western Europe – to talk, meet, and help clients with developing their security strategy. It was one of the greatest challenges in my life, but worth it. After some time, I realized that those trips were some of the most important lessons I’ve got. It would be not possible without the trust from Predica.
Spending lots of hours with my clients, especially from Oman and the United Arab Emirates, I had a great chance to not only develop my skills, build trust and business relationships but also get to know new culture, habits, and traditions. I am glad that I have met those amazing people and some of them became my friends.
Many ways to go
It is not another job with repetitive tasks in an endless loop. There are no departments with concrete walls in between. Predica is totally open. Grzegorz, our CEO, knows that Predica is built of people. Well-trained, confident and self-assured employees will perform better. And if there is internal opportunity to seek out challenges, why not try? I am the best example – nearly 4 years ago I started working in the area of identity management, which evolved into the role of the security expert. Combining these two allows me to do what I’m really passionate about.
The modern stonemason
In the Pulitzer-winning book “The Soul of a New Machine” there is a story about engineers who were designing the new generation of computers in the 1970s. They worked hard because they believed in the importance of their work. They were challenged, needed and found personal satisfaction with their daily job.
And that’s basically what I’ve found at Predica.
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