Spend enough time in the workforce, and you may encounter the unpleasant experience of not feeling particularly welcomed by the team that hired you.

And yet we know from both experience and empirical research that - particularly in our current state of distributed work - feeling welcomed, valued, and included throughout the onboarding process can have a tremendous impact on your happiness, thriving, success, and overall tenure on a team. 

We also know that in the software engineering domain, “good onboarding” typically hinges on the question, “How quickly did we get this engineer contributing lines of code?” rather than “Does this engineer feel welcomed and wanted by us, the team that hired them?” 

In this talk, Kristen Foster-Marks will offer a simple, evidence-based way to increase new teammates’ sense of belonging: microinclusions. She’ll share both “sad” and “happy” onboarding stories, demonstrating how both the presence and absence of microinclusions can impact not only a new engineer’s first impressions of a job, but their long-term happiness, success, and tenure. She’ll wrap up by sharing some simple actions that engineering leaders and teams can take during those first few months of onboarding to make sure new teammates know they were hired because they were wanted.