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Programmer Nesting Rituals
Posted By Joel Spolsky On February 2, 2012 @ 5:31 am In Advice and How-Tos | 19 Comments
I just read that the average Silicon Valley tech salary is over $100,000 . I’ve seen starting salaries for CS graduates come pretty close to the magical $100,000 mark. Google recently had to give a 10% raise  to all its employees just to stay competitive.
Yep, programmers are getting expensive. But my experience has been that most great programmers don’t really have salary as their No. 1 consideration when deciding where to work. They only worry about salary when the job is so awful that it has to pay well or they couldn’t imagine sticking around.
Here are 10 things that many programmers think about first, long before salary even comes into play:
You may think that some of these things are completely out of your control … and they may be. Sometimes people run job listings on Stack Overflow  and get very few resumes. Then they ask me, “why didn’t we get any applicants for our job listing?” And I look at it and think, “baby Moses in a basket, why would anyone want to work there?”
I know, it’s hard to say, but it’s true: some jobs are just not that attractive, and it’s not a problem of “finding programmers,” it’s a problem of “making this a place where people want to work.”
The first thing to learn is that company founders and CEOs don’t care about the same things as programmers. Usually, if you’re doing what your founder/CEO thought would be nice, you’re not really optimizing for programmers. Founder/CEOs, for example, like to save money, and they like to know what’s going on, so they think having a big room where everyone can overhear everything is a terrific work environment. Programmers need to concentrate, so they would work in a brown cardboard box if it was quiet and free from interruptions.
If you’re scoring kind of low on the “desirable workplace” scale, all is not lost. There’s a lot you can do to fix these issues, even if you are a company that makes atom bombs run by a megalomaniac micromanager with an office on a platform in the Arctic Ocean.
Come to the ERE Expo in San Diego  in March, and I’ll go into this in a lot more depth in my keynote. I’ll tell you what I know about how programmers work, what they like, what they care about, and I promise you’ll leave with a lot of ideas of how to make your workplace way more attractive and interesting to the average programmer.
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URL to article: http://www.ere.net/2012/02/02/programmer-nesting-rituals/
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://www.ere.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/EREExpo_Spring20121.gif
 over $100,000: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204624204577179193752435590.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
 give a 10% raise: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703523604575605273596157634.html
 job listings on Stack Overflow: http://careers.stackoverflow.com/jobs/
 ERE Expo in San Diego: http://www.ereexpo.com/2012spring/
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