Issue #327, 1st March 2019

This Week's Favorite


Kung Fu (Startup Strategy)
6 minutes read.

Jason Cohen is one of my favorite thinkers and writers. This post is filled with his lessons learned and links to additional reading about pretty much every topic you can think of. This is a real gem: "If you believe someone with a title of XYZ isn’t useful, or important, you’ve never worked with greatness at that function. Maintain that attitude, if you want a blind spot in your organization forever."

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.


Culture


When I’m Asked to Estimate Something
1 minutes read.

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

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How to Make Your Organization Attractive to Engineering Talent
6 minutes read.

Oh wow, I love these 3 points on job qualities that engineers actually care about by Jason Swett: "(1) Permission and encouragement to do my job right (2) Working with and for smart people (3) Making a good career investment" -- it's easy to say "sure, we have that" but how do you make it visible to candidates? Can you articulate that and provide examples? Is it visible to future candidates who are not speaking with you directly?

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The 7 Step Onboarding Process to Get Employees Fully Ramped in 2 Weeks
5 minutes read.

Marie Prokopets covers everything you need to do to create a great onboarding experience for new hires. I'd try to also set clear expectations on where they should focus their first 30-90 days (getting the context they need, asking a lot of questions etc.,) and how did you pick which features they should start with, in their first 3-4 weeks. This will show them you gave it a lot of thought, building a personalized plan to optimize for their successful onboarding.

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Incidents — Trends From the Trenches
9 minutes read.

Subbu Allamaraju did an in-depth analysis of well-known production incidents, and his takeaways are important to share inside your organization. The first thing you'd like to work on is making sure awareness is not "locked" only inside the engineering organization. It can be even a good All-hands discussion, where the CEO can cover some of the points under Subbu's "Potential ways to improve" and let the team participate on where they'd like to focus next.

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Peopleware


Feeling Good: Justin Kan's Program
8 minutes read.

Justin Kan shares his own "User Manual" to observe and improve his happiness. Maybe it's me getting older, but I've been thinking about this topic myself a lot lately. I like how Justin puts it: "So why bother at all? I think about life and success like playing a board game on a rainy Saturday afternoon. When you are playing the game, you want to play by the rules (live a moral life), and you want to do your best to win (do well, be successful). But after the game is over, you will put it away in the box, and a few hours later you probably won’t even remember or care who won."

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The Founder’s Guide to Discipline: Lessons From Front’s Mathilde Collin
12 minutes read.

Mathilde Collin's consistency in planning and communication is remarkable. I've been sending the SWLW weekly email every Friday for the past 6 years, and it can be grueling. Consistency and discipline are important as they build trust. They get others to trust your ability to see and communicate what is important, and how far the team has been progressing to meet these goals. It sets a rhythm of success: "If you’re not disciplined with managing your time and religiously tracking your company’s progress, it’s going to be very tough to succeed."

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From Software Engineer to Engineering Manager
8 minutes read.

"No one wants to work for a manager who wants to do everything except become a better manager, so please don’t inflict that pain on your team." -- David Chua with a post that every new manager, or someone who wants to transition into management, should read and apply David's recommendations. Serving as a manager requires a lot of emotional and mental investment, so find ways to make this journey less lonely.

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Inspiring Tweets


@scottbelsky: Only Way to Be an Expert Is to Remain a Student

@trisweb: Every Complex Excel Spreadheet Is Like a Product Egg Just Waiting to Hatch.

- 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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