Issue #336, 3rd May 2019

This Week's Favorite


On Pain, Careers, and Doing Things the Hard Way
4 minutes read.

Charity Majors writes and talks with her heart. You can feel every word and every sentence, and this is why I am such a big fan of her journey and her courage. "Turns out not every problem can be powered through on a high pain tolerance. The collateral damage starts to rack up. Sometimes the only way to succeed is to redefine success." -- I think that once we find our biggest desires and goals in life (via things that do not scale or sustainable), we should shift gears and look for habits that are sustainable. To keep my brain flexible and open to new types of challenges, I found that setting two zero-to-one adventures per month (can be silly or small), which I call "Binary experience", is a good balance.

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Culture


Me When I Launch My MVP
1 minutes read.

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

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The 5 Whys of Organizational Design
5 minutes read.

Kellan Elliott-McCrea with a helpful checklist to ask yourself how your company is doing (and why), narrowing down on where you have gaps of expectations, behaviors or hires. Share this post with managers and tech leads in your company and have a conversation. Where do you need to focus on? How would you tell if things are getting better?

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Working Remotely, 4 Years In
5 minutes read.

Julia Evans with an important post if you consider to work as a remote employee or enable others to do it successfully. My favorite takeaway was: "When working remotely I do think you have to be much more intentional about how you construct your relationships with your coworkers. If I don’t explicitly decide to talk to someone, it’s very possible that I’ll literally never talk to them. (like there’s no chance I’ll run into them serendipitously in the office)."

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What Are Good Books, Articles, or Videos on Strategy and Decision Making for Your Career, Business, or Life? (Thread)
4 minutes read.

James Clear with a Twitter thread that would help you buy a few more good books (and podcasts to listen to) to read this year. I've said it before and I'll say it again, reading technical/professional books can an unfair advantage for your career. It compounds well (knowledge), and very few people actually do that in a sustainable way.

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Peopleware


Satisfaction and Progress in Open-Ended Work
6 minutes read.

Reading Andy Matuschak's thoughts here on how to "plan enough" and "do enough" came just in time for me: "In the middle of my sketching hours, I don’t want to be worrying about whether I’ll be ready for my classroom prototype next month. Within a given day, action-oriented “butt-in-chair”-style advice does help; meta-thought is just distracting. But go too long without error correction, and you’ll misspend hours in the chair. Some separation is in order. [...] I begin each day by selecting some action-oriented goals which I hope will advance some broader achievement-oriented goal" -- This is something I struggle with, jumping from monthly goals to a daily rhythm. Following Andy's framework helped to set better balance, while I've added a few habits of my own to make it sustainable. I'll write my post about it soon, hoping that maybe others can use some of it too.

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How to Hold Your Team Accountable
7 minutes read.

I'd read the section about "Weed Out the Excuses" and think if that is something you tend to do yourself or if you're comfortable confronting others when they're not taking ownership. Dave Bailey with a post I think all managers should read and follow to create a consistency of excellence.

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How Do You Pay Back Your Relationship Debt?
8 minutes read.

Power observation and advice from Tom Bartel on how to handle "Relationship Debt." I have a nice t-shirt on the website with "Software is made by humans" as a reminder that humans are part of the system we build. Treat them well and be on their side, as trust is something you build and maintain. This takeaway is something worth noticing to show appreciation: "The more difficult it is to keep the commitment, the higher the trust you earn by keeping it. There is a catch, though: The other person has to know about the difficulty you had to overcome. This is a challenge for a lot of engineers: Sometimes, they pull off amazing things within impossible deadlines, but, because others don’t quite understand what they do, they don’t get the credit they deserve."

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Inspiring Tweets


@Carnage4Life: As a Manager I've Learned the Golden Rule (Aka Treat People How YOU Want to Be Treated) Is Actually Bad Advice. We All Have Different Work Styles and Personalities So What You Like Others May Dislike. Better Advice Is to Treat People How THEY Want to Be Treated.

@Johnny_Uzan: One Principle Eliminates a Thousand Decisions.

- 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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