Issue #147, 18th September 2015

This Week's Favorite


How We Ended Up With Microservices at SoundCloud (Yes, It's a People Problem)
10 minutes read.

Phil Calçado from SoundCloud shares the evolution to microservices. This is not a technical blog post. The engineering stuff is actually less interesting than the organizational piece, i.e. people & process.

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Culture


Value of A Start Up Idea
1 minutes read.

As always, my humble effort to help you start the weekend with a smile on your face.

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Creating the Dream Team: Transform Your Engineering Organization to Attract New Talent
6 minutes read.

Looking inwards is an important step to understand your own strength and weaknesses as you're trying to scale the business and the team. One more point I'd add to it is figuring out the story behind the team and product. What is your message to the team? What is your message to the people you're trying to hire? Are you telling a story that energize the surrounding about your mission and culture?

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GitHub: Scaling on Ruby, With a Nomadic Tech Team
10 minutes read.

No doubt, you can build a great engineering brand, provide true value to the world and build a hugely successful company without the need to chase after the latest, shiniest stack: "Then as the interview process went along, it was more revealed to me that this is actually a really pragmatic set of hackers that just hack on Ruby, hack on C and spend their time working on more interesting things using a more stable stack, rather than chasing after the latest and shiny tech"

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Open-Source as a Project Model for Internal Work
8 minutes read.

I really enjoyed these slides by Kevin Lamping, on how you can actually use the open-source model internally, even if you're not planning to build a 100% remote team. Kevin recorded a 3 parts video (look for it on YouTube), where he shares the details, but the slides will provide many gems you can experiment with to see if it improves your communication (e.g. reducing friction when people want to contribute, having empathic code-reviews) and the way you build software.

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Peopleware


‘Give Away Your Legos’ and Other Commandments for Scaling Startups
14 minutes read.

Close second to my favorite post of the week. I tried to write the one thing I really enjoyed from this post, but it has so many great take aways from Molly Graham from her learning at Facebook and Google, during the crazy growth these companies have went through. Grab some coffee or tea, and read it. It will probably remind you of situation you've been through, and provide some tools to better handle it in the future.

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Book Club for Tech Leads
4 minutes read.

Thinking of doing a Book Club at work, to share knowledge and help others with their personal growth? The team at 99designs have some solid ideas you can barrow if you want to try it in your place, including which books to start with.

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A Leader’s Guide to Deciding: What, When, and How to Decide
13 minutes read.

You'll want to read and bookmark this post by Steven Sinofsky. Figuring out when and how to make a decision is one of the hardest challenges. You often feel that making every decision is what makes you a leader, and the loudest you talk the more impact you'll have. As we grow, we learn that it's far from being the right thing for our team and for our organization. A framework that I plan to start using more often and share it with my teammates.

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Inspiring Tweets


@holman: These Clueless Companies That Make You Write Code on a Whiteboard in the Interview Better Deploy Their Code With a Whiteboard Too, Dammit

@JoshuaKerievsky: Stop Managing a Backlog. If You Remember It, It's Important. If It Resurfaces, It's Important. Make Your Process Lightweight. #Nobacklogs

- Oren

P.S. Can you share this email? I'd love for more people to experiment and improve their company's culture.

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