Issue #153, 30th October 2015

This Week's Favorite


Open Source Culture
5 minutes read.

This kind of posts, this kind of attitude towards openness as to the way companies are built and not only the products they build is my inspiration for sharing this weekly email. Are you ready to share more than you're feeling comfortable with? Are you ready to make mistakes as part of your learning process?

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Culture


Technical Debt in One Image
1 minutes read.

My humble effort to help you start the weekend with a smile on your face.

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Recognizing the Breaking Points of Your Startup's Management Structure
3 minutes read.

If you seek to understand why companies grow in a very similar way this post provides the required insights. It's a simple yet powerful observation on the number of relationships needed to groom, and why often 7 is the rough limit. It also provides a good ratio for the size of management team needed in each step, even though I feel more and more companies are starting to make a clear separation between People Lead, Tech Lead and Domain Lead, resulting in different relationships over time than the traditional format.

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Peer 1:1s - Using Randomness to Strengthen Your Team
4 minutes read.

I'm going to steal this one. Having 1:1s with your peers can teach you a lot about yourself, and can be a place where you can make others better by providing that feedback people need to hear to improve their craft. Dave Zwieback shares not only the process and benefits, but also open-sourced a small script you can use to start experimenting with random 1:1s at work next week.

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Medium's Way We Work: Teams (Video)
49 minutes read.

Really enjoyed listening to these talks, but there were two that really made me think. The first one was by Dan Pupius (Head of Engineering at Medium), starting at 16:01 about the distinction in roles they have at Medium, and the following talk which focus more of how to create an environment where people can share their thoughts, and show genuine interest. Good way to enjoy your next commute to work.

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Peopleware


Busy, but Not Productive
3 minutes read.

Well said: "Unfortunately, for lots of startups, learning takes the form of doing something and then seeing what happens. That’s not learning. That’s just being busy. True learning requires asking a question and forming a hypothesis before taking action." -- are you productive or you too are addicted to being busy?

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Programmers Guide to Weight Loss
3 minutes read.

Amir Shevat (from Google) shares how he lost 44 pounds in the last 6 months. We all know the dangers of sitting in front of a computer all day and eating outside, so every tip I can get about staying healthy and fit is something I'm willing to give a try. I love this little hack of explicitly deciding what not to eat, as a way to reduce the mental capacity needed when figuring out the next meal.

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The Five Flavors of Being a CTO
5 minutes read.

A good friend reached out to me asking for advice on how he can build a career path that would lead him eventually to being a CTO. I was lucky enough to see how great CTO can be like (thankfully I'm working for one), so I did my best to offer some ideas. This post, I feel, provides a good framework of the different roles CTO can fill, both internally and externally.

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Inspiring Tweets


@StevenShorrock: When Systems Go Down, Organisational Resilience Comes to the Fore. That's the People, Folks. Without the People, Everything Stays Down.

@garrytan: People View Their Own Behavior as the Consequence of Situation, but They View Behavior by Others as Inherent Personality Traits.

- 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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