There is a stereotype of programmers as being antisocial and difficult, and unfortunately many of us take on this attitude as if it comes with the job - but it doesn't have to be this way! I know it from experience, because I've been an angry, judgemental know-it-all, and I'm ready to tell you how I completely changed my attitude and refactored my life.

In this talk I'll explain how anger and fear are the root causes of our aggressive behavior, how these feelings manifest as judgemental comments online, bullying in the workplace and ultimately keep the tech community toxic and stunted. I'll show you how embracing compassion, respect, and empathy will make you a better programmer and a happier person.


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Omni Adams at 09:55 on 8 Mar 2019

Touching, powerful anecdotes and a call for more empathy in our industry. Great talk, even with the pneumonia. I've been wrestling with trying to be more empathetic for a while now, and still have a long way to go.

Great talk.

Chris Holland at 09:58 on 8 Mar 2019

Great talk, I absolutely loved it. Very powerful life experiences and very insightful, introspective advice.

Dave Buchanan at 10:02 on 8 Mar 2019

Excellent talk and topic. Very under-appreciated issue in tech, thanks for shining a light on it and hopefully improving attitudes! Speaker had a clear message, very well presented. Thought the pacing and transition between each point were well done. Perfect talk to kickoff MWPHP.

Brent Mitchell at 10:03 on 8 Mar 2019

Great talk, I definitely recognized where I can make some positive changes in my work/life.

Steve Grunwell at 10:04 on 8 Mar 2019

Really fantastic keynote, full of touching moments and carrying a heavy message of compassion and empathy. Would love to see this at more conferences!

It’s not difficult to be kind. It’s important for our community to hear the reminders of the payoffs of propagating goodness and empathy in our interactions with each other and those we help with our skills.

Great insight without preaching, very insightful personal examples.

Greg Lyon at 14:20 on 8 Mar 2019

Thank you for telling your story, Jessica, and showing the value /reward that can be associated with this shift in attitude!! Wonderful and engaging.

Eugen Neuber at 15:01 on 8 Mar 2019

Very interesting! I learned a lot from it.

Roger Creasy at 15:49 on 8 Mar 2019

Great talk about important topics. This talk definitely had a positive impact on me. Being an empathetic human is critical to teamwork, and is just the right way to act.

Noah Bratzel at 19:43 on 8 Mar 2019

I appreciate the ambitious goal of getting developers to consider working on being better humans and treating people well. I think this talk worked particularly well because of the willingness to talk about her own failings and development in this area. It was very worth hearing and certainly caused self reflection. That being said, I still appreciate a solid expletive filled rant ;)

Chris Holland at 10:00 on 9 Mar 2019

Jessica Zehavi at 13:18 on 9 Mar 2019

I was really moved by this talk. It had ups, it had downs, it had emotional bits and real dev culture references (and compelling reasons why things need to change!) It's making me look introspectively about my own behavior and responses too. I love that! The only bit of constructive feedback I would give is that at points it felt like we were jumping from story to story and I didn't quite understand how it was all related until the end - maybe that's intentional though. Each bit individually was compelling so you never lost me. :D

Really well presented content.

Amy Gebhardt at 10:04 on 12 Mar 2019

Well delivered and super important content. Jessica was authentic and honest and it made the message even more powerful. This talk included themes that many of us need to be reminded of often (myself very much included).