Issue #61, 17th January 2014

This Week's Favorite


Super Successful Companies
15 minutes read.

What companies that grow up to be extremely successful do when they are very young? Sam Altman (Y Combinator) with 16 observations you have to read this week. My favorite - these companies keep expenses low. To attract talent and retain amazing employees, we should invest our heart into it, not our wallet. It reminds me of a busy parent trying to buy their kids' happiness (or forgiveness) by buying them new shining toys to play with. Great read!

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Culture


Compile Flight Rules for Your Software Engineering Team
5 minutes read.

Great post by Edmond Lau. It's so hard to pause our routine of delivering yet another feature, and try to extract value from our mistakes as a team. Doing an effective retrospective is hard, so many teams give up on it. That's a shame, because the goal is not to deliver more waste or repeat the same mistake over and over. It also says a lot about the organization you're building and how you perceive your craftsmanship as an engineer. I like how Edmond puts it - "You have to steady yourself for feedback and remember that the goal is not to put shame to your mistakes but to maximize collective wisdom."

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Welcome Inside Unbounce
5 minutes read.

Do you believe you've got an awesome product and ridiculously great team? Did you tell anyone about it? The team at Unbounce are really killing it, but they forgot to share the news with the world. What do you plan to do this year to show how amazing your team is? Where are they going to talk? What lessons can you share? How can you provide value? Do stuff, tell people.

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How to Hire Your Startup Star
5 minutes read.

The team at Applicaster have a great approach for hiring, one that I believe we can all "steal" some ideas from. I truly loved the concept of "Loose the labels" and the clarity behind "Type I error vs. Type II error". Really well written!

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Peopleware


Engineering Managers Should Code 30% of Their Time
5 minutes read.

Eliot Horowitz (MongoDB's CTO and co-founder) explains why you should code 30% of your time, even if you're leading large group of engineers. Loved his tips and strategies for freeing enough time to practice your skills as a Maker. Would also recommend writing posts, giving talks and working on side-projects and open-source projects to feel that accomplishment of delivering value outside of your company.

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How Would You Recommend Burin to Get a Mentor?
5 minutes read.

Having a mentor who can push you out of your comfort zone is one of the common practices highly successful people recommend. But, how do you get one? A few days ago Burin Asavesna sent me an email, asking for my advice. I thought it would be interesting to take it as an experiment for all of us. What would you suggest? What should Burin read or try? Can you help to write an email template you'd use? Please write your suggestions so we could all learn from it.

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Don’t Be the Reason People Quit
4 minutes read.

"Here’s a strategy for employee retention: take responsibility for the dysfunction on your team, and in your company." This post is a great wake up call for everyone who lead a team. Share it with other managers and on your next lunch with them, figure out what you can do to improve retention and happiness?

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Inspiring Tweets


@joelgascoigne: "Learn How to Be Happy With What You Have While You Pursue All That You Want." - Jim Rohn

@patio11: Q: I Don't Have Connections. How Do I Make Them? A: Do Great Work and Then -- And This Next Part Is Important -- Tell People About It.

- 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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