Issue #268, 12th January 2018

This Week's Favorite


Try Something New for 30 Days (TED Video)
4 minutes read.

I like this idea of trying something new for 30 days. It can be for your personal journey and growth, and it can also be for your team. What would you like to have your team doing for 30 days? Talk about it over lunch. Make it happen.

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Culture


The Spec Was Vague
1 minutes read.

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

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A New Approach to Feature Requests
8 minutes read.

The process of handling feature requests by your customers says a lot about your culture: "I’m not looking for the feature she’s seeing in her mind. Instead, I want to know everything I can about the situation that led up to her emailing us. I want to know what “job” she needed that grid calendar for. And I want to put all of this on a timeline as best as I can."

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Engineering Growth: Tracks (Searchable Format)
5 minutes read.

David Shimon made it easy for all of us to get ideas for engineering growth areas. Can be extremely helpful as a way to think of your team's personal growth: use it in your 1:1s, Performance Conversations etc.

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If You're a Designer and Hesitant to Try Out Management as the Next Step in Your Career, What's Giving You Pause?
3 minutes read.

Cap Watkins with a single question that led to some interesting answers. Trey McKay's answer makes me wonder how we can further help new managers in this transition, or at least let them experience it: "Two things for me - 1) not knowing how to transition from experienced IC to inexperienced manager, and 2) not knowing if I possess the right skill set to help other designers be successful & feel motivated (and want to be managed by me)"

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Peopleware


Understanding Your Circle of Competence: How Warren Buffett Avoids Problems
3 minutes read.

"The size of that circle is not very important; knowing its boundaries, however, is vital." -- I constantly ask managers and technical leads to consider what would be their Unfair Advantage, those things they do so well that it almost seems too easy for others. When they lead with that, others will follow as it most often compliments their Unfair Advantage.

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1/ Everyone Knows About "Deliberate Practice" "Grit", but How Do You Apply These Tactically. Physical Sports Like Basketball Have Drills and Habits That You Can Apply and Idols Like MJ or Lebron. Are There the Equivalent? Meaning What Habits Do You Need to Unlearn and Learn? (Thread)
6 minutes read.

Sizhao Yang with one of the best tweetstorm I've read lately. So many gems that made me pause, take some notes and think: "Instead: skim the reading, do problems, read, do more difficult problems, and read. This is different than the process of reading, highlighting, quizzing, and midterming I mentioned before which most people do."

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On Chasing the Right (Inbox) “Zero”
3 minutes read.

Inbox Zero to me is about having a system to reduce mental overload, pretty much this: "Put to best use, Inbox Zero is merely a philosophical practice of learning to be parsimonious about which and how many inputs we allow into our lives—and, then, to responsibly but mindfully tend to those inputs in a way that is never allowed to hinder our personal commitment to doing the work that really matters to us."

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Inspiring Tweets


@isaach: Forget Chess and Go; I Would Like an AI to Teach Itself Enterprise Billing

@RayDalio: Make Your Passion and Your Work One and the Same and Do It With People You Want to Be With. Work Is Either 1) a Job You Do to Earn the Money to Pay for the Life You Want to Have or 2) What You Do to Achieve Your Mission, or Some Mix of the Two.

- 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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