Issue #201, 30th September 2016

This Week's Favorite


Great Engineering, Failed Product (Video)
58 minutes read.

So many gems in this talk by Marty Cagan. One of my favorite takeaways is rethinking of how much your R&D should be involved in bringing new ideas to the table, and fostering an environment where product strategy is discussed more often. I've seen features, products, teams and companies been thrown away due to lack of communication and alignment towards producing real value. This talk will open your eyes to the way you think of product strategy, roadmaps, testing and more.

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Culture


My Favorite Source Code Comment of All Time
1 minutes read.

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

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Six Recipes for Software Managers
5 minutes read.

Adam Buggia's recipes are great way to check yourself as a manager, getting people to be happier and most productive. "Team Surveys", "Resilient Teams" and "A Safe Environment" are extremely practical and often overlooked. Practice how to get the most of these frameworks.

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Why HR Shouldn't Own Inclusion
5 minutes read.

This phrase by Cate Huston is extremely powerful and beautifully explains in my opinion, why the responsibility and accountability for inclusion have to be distributed to all managers across the company: "Inclusion is the potential to include everyone, not the inclusion of everyone. That means that people must be included on the basis of things they can’t change (gender, orientation, race, etc…) but it’s perfectly reasonable, necessary, to exclude people on the basis of things they could change, but have chosen not to (bigotry)"

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Hail the Heroes!
4 minutes read.

Jon Dowdle (SRE team lead at InVision) shares an interesting idea they tried out at InVision to increase engineering focus. We tried similar practice we named "Day Watcher", making a daily on-call rotation to help with production/development issues. Basically, getting one person to put down fires instead of the entire team. Like everything else, there are many tradeoffs here and I believe this can be easier to achieve once you reach a certain team size. Interesting practice to experiment with.

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Peopleware


On Developer Hiring
4 minutes read.

There is nothing better than lessons learned coming from analyzing a lot of data! Kasra Rahjerdi from Stack Overflow will make your job description probably two order of magnitudes better. Please read "I have a list of standard questions I ask every time I interview for a new role" and think about adding it to the next job description you're publishing.

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How to Be a Better Leader in 4 Badly Drawn Charts
6 minutes read.

Interesting observations between relationship-focus managers and results-focus managers, and how you can play to your own strength to balance these two extremes. Reminds me a lot of Dick Costolo's "Follow the Leader" talk.

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Discipline of No
5 minutes read.

“If I’ve got three different people that disagree, then it’s my job to get them all together and come to an agreement on what to do next... If people want to argue, that’s fine, and the decision may not go the way I want it to go, but at least we reached a point of decision.” -- This is a critical skill in the organization: be able to share context, listen to everyone, decide and above all if you disagree, learn to disagree and commit.

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Inspiring Tweets


@KentBeck: Addressing 100 College Students. None of Them Knew Me by Name but They All Knew My Work. I'll Take It, Any Day.

@rands: “When in Doubt, Have a 1:1.”

- 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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