Issue #445, 4th June 2021

This Week's Favorite


How Organisations Are Changing
18 minutes read.

"You don't need power and wealth to influence the world, you need an idea and a community. The idea that you can't change the world without things you don't have access to is simply a control mechanism, an illusion created by the system. It's simply not true." -- this view is powerful to consider how to increase your impact in your organization. The community can be your team or a few teams, while you are helping to promote an idea and build the engagement around that. Simon Wardley will give you a few ideas worth exploring such as "leaderless leadership," how to adopt principles from "remote-first" companies, designing for failures (chaos/resilient engineering), and many more.

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Culture


Early Stage Startup: "Our Ideal Customers Are Other Early Stage Startups."
1 minutes read.

My humble effort to help you start the weekend with a smile on your face, even in this difficult time.

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Rituals for Hypergrowth: An Inside Look at How YouTube Scaled
7 minutes read.

Shishir Mehrotra's practices and insights from his experience scaling YouTube are helpful. I highly recommend skimming the topics and zooming in on where you feel the pain today. I found the "Weekly cadence," "Two-pagers," and "Matrix planning and allocation" highly relevant to my needs.

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Are Pull Requests Holding Back Your Team?
11 minutes read.

David Masters will make you think about your code reviewing process. It's hard to figure out how to maximize (or abandon) the rituals we're used to, but I can see a lot of the downsides in Pull Requests happening ("Change Theater") almost on a daily basis. Share this post with your team and have a discussion. Maybe you want to conduct more f2f code-review sessions rather than using PRs (play with the ratio)? Maybe you can review some PRs together as a team once a week (across PRs) to learn together patterns worth noticing? What else?

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Managing Up - Lessons From Scaling Teams at Credit Karma and Lyft
10 minutes read.

This post should be a recommended read for anyone starting to lead bigger projects and teams. When it's not executed well (see section "Tactics for Overcoming Common Upward Management Challenges"), you can lose many points with your peers and manager. Ask them if they feel you are handling it well today and where you can improve given the tools and frameworks in this post.

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Share it via Twitter or email.


Peopleware


Unusual Tips to Keep Slack From Becoming a Nightmare
5 minutes read.

Slack is a powerful tool, yet it can easily drag our team's productivity down. Jade Rubik offers some great tips to utilize. I'm sure everyone is trying to figure out how to use emails, Slack, and meetings to avoid interruptions. It's worth documenting our principles and preferences and enforce them every day, reminding people how quickly these things can slow us down.

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


Life Is Like a Video Game. The 💵 Question: Which Game Are You Playing? (Thread)
4 minutes read.

Julie Zhuo's framing of life as a game (or games) is interesting. I want to work with people I respect and learn from. I care about doing good in the world, working for a company that I believe will make things a bit better for everyone if successful. I find excitement and joy in practicing many types of "Maker mode" - products, side-projects, and teams. Which rules do you want to play by? What makes you happy?

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“Stories” Don’t Tell a Story: Good Sprint Planning Uses Milestones
4 minutes read.

Chuck Groom covers a trap I've seen many teams doing when adopting sprints as their methodology. Focusing on value versus features is more than semantics as it shifts the way people think and measure their progress.

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Share it via Twitter or email.


Inspiring Tweets


@jasongorman: Pair programming isn't 2 people doing the work of one. It's 2 people avoiding the rework of 7.

@arvidkahl: To become an expert in any field, you have to be an ambitious learner first. Every expert started out as a curious novice once.

- 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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