Issue #282, 20th April 2018

This Week's Favorite


Planning Your Own Chaos Day
6 minutes read.

Tammy Butow covers in-depth a practice that will become common, I believe, in the next few years in all companies: Chaos Days. It can bring your team together, it will make your systems more robust, and it should give you good practice for dealing with a crisis. Use Tammy's blueprint to try it in your company.

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Culture


When I Pop by a Designer’s Desk.
1 minutes read.

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

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How to Turn Conflict Into A Communication Tool
3 minutes read.

The way that your organization is dealing with conflicts is a good proxy for your culture resiliency. Anett Grant with helpful tips on how to leverage conflicts to improve your decision making. One point I'd add to it - start the discussion around the conflict with a clear statement of who's the decision maker and that you'll support the end result regardless: "I'd like to be explicit here on my thoughts, but first - This is [person] decision to make, and we will stand behind [person] regardless of the decision, as always."

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How I Interviewed My Interviewers
5 minutes read.

Ketki Duvvuru with a methodical approach I wish more people would do when interviewing at a company -- making sure you interview the interviewers just like they interview you. Which questions you'd ask your future peers and manager? Do you spend enough time with candidates asking them to ask you hard questions?

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Write Clean Code and Avoid the Distractions of Emerging Technology
3 minutes read.

Ben Halpern with a topic I learned to appreciate more and more as I get older: focus on the fundamentals, rather than chasing new frameworks: "Practical software development has always borrowed from multiple paradigms and you will find it possible to move between them when natural glide paths arise. Forcing this out of fear of being left behind is not helpful." -- the same rules apply to how you run marketing and sales teams. Make sure people focus on core skills (e.g. figuring out Unit Economics) before mastering usage of bots to capture leads.

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Peopleware


My Manager Toolkit
4 minutes read.

John Cline with excellent tools he built (over Google spreadsheet) or use that could help managers level up their mindfulness as leaders. I loved the "Engagement Surveys," both the questions used there and the ease of taking the spreadsheet and use it with my team.

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5 Takeaways From My First Job as a Software Developer
3 minutes read.

Reading Shahar Avigezer's thoughts and takeaways was great as it reminded me the beginning of my journey, and what we have to keep doing as a team to create a safe and inclusive place for new hires (regardless of their experience). Give people the time to gain the context they need, rather than pushing them to celebrate early "push to production!" -- we get it, our CI and CD are superb. Can we say the same about how quickly and efficiently people gain product and business context when they join our team?

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It’s Not Them, It’s You
3 minutes read.

David Oates with questions you need to ask yourself to evaluate your responsibility as a leader, when things don't go your way: "Start by assuming it’s not them, it’s you. This was a big learning for me when I was becoming a designer — my first instinct when a user didn’t understand my designs was to blame them: they’re blind! It’s so obvious! Just because you can’t see how your designs could be improved doesn’t mean they can’t be improved. The same is true with leadership."

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Inspiring Tweets


@elonmusk: Yes, Excessive Automation at Tesla Was a Mistake. To Be Precise, My Mistake. Humans Are Underrated.

@_ericelliott: Dev Productivity Killers: * Notifications * Meetings * Emails * Interruptions Great Managers Minimize These. Bad Managers Cause Them.

- 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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