Issue #350, 9th August 2019

This Week's Favorite


Getting Real About Managing Up
9 minutes read.

Kellan Elliott-McCrea provides you with all the tips you should follow to increase your influence in the organization, by proactively aligning with your manager. I've written a few notes to myself for how to apply it with my manager, making sure our 1:1s are more effective and that I come more prepared. Share this with managers and senior IC in your team.

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Culture


How AI Products Actually Work
1 minutes read.

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

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How to Establish Peer Accountability and Overcome Interpersonal Discomfort
6 minutes read.

"In a well-functioning team, there is nothing more motivating than the fear of letting your team mates down. Clear decisions and goals make it visible when that is the case. If you are a team lead, this is where you want your team to be." -- One thing that you can consider is having "Feedback protocol" meeting with relevant teammates, where you discuss how feedback will be given. This will decouple the "how we communicate" from "I have feedback for you now," making sure both sides are open-minded to listen and share for mutual growth.

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The Fine Line Between Fear and Courage
5 minutes read.

"In all the difficult decisions that I made through the course of running Loudcloud and Opsware, I never once felt brave. In fact, I often felt scared to death. I never lost those feelings, but after much practice, I learned to ignore them. That learning process might also be called the courage development process. [...] Over the past 10 years, technological advances dramatically lowered the financial bar for starting a new company, but the courage bar for building a great company remains as high as it has ever been." -- Ben Horowitz is spot on. You don't have the be the CEO to feel these emotions. I see it often when managers need to let go of someone. You're scared of the conversation, and you're afraid of how to communicate with the team. Do we have the courage to do what is right?

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Disasterpiece Theater: Slack’s Process for Approachable Chaos Engineering
7 minutes read.

You can take Slack's method to introduce the concepts behind Choas/Resilient Engineering in your company: "In January of 2018, we started a rigorous process of identifying failures that are likely to happen and that we must be able to tolerate, and then purposely causing them to happen in production. This isn’t (yet) Chaos Engineering as practiced and evangelized by Netflix. It’s the first step; we call it Disasterpiece Theater."

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Peopleware


All the Best Engineering Advice I Stole From Non-Technical People
11 minutes read.

Marianne Bellotti with one of my favorite posts for this week. I highly recommend reading the 5th section about "Thinking is also work" as we often ignore it, letting the day to day inertia set the rhythm for us.

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My Coding Days Are Over and Most of My Day Is Spent Communicating. Guess What? Coding Was Much Easier. Now Instead of Reading Programming Books I Read Books About Learning How to Communicate Better. Long Ways to Go. What Are Your Favorites? (Thread)
3 minutes read.

Many books and other resources worth checking in this thread by Elias Torres. Also, consider picking 2-3 books and reread them once a year.

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Feedback
8 minutes read.

I'm not sure who's behind these notes on receiving and giving feedback, but it's priceless. This pitfall is so dangerous, I wanted to write it here: "If, on the other hand, you use a 1-way communication method (email, text, voicemail), then the recipient can easily become defensive and angry without you realizing it. And because you don’t notice the anger, you won’t be able to address it. Unaddressed, that anger will soon turn into resentment towards you. Therefore, do NOT use a 1-way communication method (email, text, voicemail) to give feedback, unless it is 100% positive. "

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Inspiring Tweets


@naval: The Lindy Effect for Startups: the Longer You Go Without Shipping Product, the More Likely You Will Never Ship Product.

@mkobach: Skills Don’t Add, They Compound A Content Creator Who Is a Great Writer + Photographer + Graphic Designer Is Worth 10x Any of Those Skills Individually

- 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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