Issue #352, 23rd August 2019

This Week's Favorite


Nobody Really Owns Product Work
4 minutes read.

I've learned to detach my emotions from my code about 12 years ago when I saw how little impact it had on the business. It was a good lesson to study and serve our customers (and their problems) rather than my solution to it. Jonas Downey writes it well: "The trick is to change how you evaluate forward progress: the long-term survival of your contributions is irrelevant. The important thing is that the product is evolving into the best version your team can create together."

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Culture


Me Following Along With Coding Tutorials
1 minutes read.

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

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Experts Aren’t Good at Building Shared Understanding
3 minutes read.

"Experts aren’t explicitly aware of the value of all of this information, and so they tend not to volunteer it without being asked. When a newcomer watches an expert in action, a common refrain is, “how did you know to do that?”" -- Lorin Hochstein explains why we should all try to create (or iterate on) a mentorship program or some other explicit method to share context and information.

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Increasing Engineering Tempo at Splice (Slides)
8 minutes read.

Juan Pablo Buriticá with 129 slides on iterations the engineering team at Splice took to measure and increase their learning speed. You'll get plenty of ideas to try out in your company. The missing part for me was the align on how management feels about the speed and quality of delivery, e.g.: Are you working on the right things (in management's point of view)? Are you delivering on time for the critical projects? Are you holding back the business? Did you collect feedback on the product's quality from the Customer Success teams or directly from customers?

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Skip the Shortcuts
4 minutes read.

Writing is still an undervalued skill in our industry. Like code and source-control, having a document to iterate on with your expectations, practices, and values will let you reflect every few months. You can share that document - inside the company or outside - to collect feedback from others and learn from them. Sharpen your thoughts and with that how you lead and build the team.

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Peopleware


Here Are the 0.1% of Resources I've Consumed That Have Brought Me 90% of the Value (Thread)
5 minutes read.

George Mack with a thread that will get your brain jumping around. I've spent an hour reading and listening to different talks. Browse around and add to your reading list (or favorite podcast player). I need to write my thread at some point, as I feel it can provide some value to people who want to explore.

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NerdWallet’s CEO on Navigating the Shift From First-Time Founder to Seasoned Exec
14 minutes read.

״One of the biggest shifts you need to make as founding CEO of a scaling startup is realizing that your product is the company, not the product itself.״ -- Even if you're tight on time I highly recommend reading the third and fourth bullets (or "mindset shifts") by Tim Chen. I took a lot from it, thinking about the weak spots I have in my organization that I want to work on.

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3 Ways I Learned to Break Out of My Comfort Zone as a Public Speaker
4 minutes read.

David Cancel is a wonderful role model, leading by example on many aspects and sharing his journey along the way (I'm a big fan if it wasn't clear by now): "Being a frontman and having my name and face out there is pretty difficult. But the reason I do it is that I believe it's one of the best ways for me to serve my company. To push myself out of my comfort zone and try to get as much publicity for the company as possible. How do I do it? I figured out how to make it intellectually interesting." -- Making something fun and interesting for yourself is how you let your brain deal with the struggles of learning. Change the rules, play with the format until you're enjoying the iterations just enough to try again. Take a few minutes and google up his name to watch a few of his talks or interviews.

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Inspiring Tweets


@rands: Most of Good Leadership Is Small Wins That You’ll Never See.

@dharmesh: As a Startup: At First You Fight Death. Next You Fight Stagnation. Then You Fight Complexity. It's a Noble Fight.

- 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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