Last week saw the first session of a new Canada and US Mentoring Circle, with startup CTOs and VPs joining to discuss topics as diverse as team morale and Teal Organisations. We're pulling together names for the next European Circle right now, which will likely start in September, so drop me a line if you'd like to talk it over!
This is the last week before our first Successful 1:1s workshop on Aug 23rd - don't forget there's a £100 discount for subscribers if you'd like to join, using the code "indeedSEVERALwind": Book your space here
On with the show!
Andy @ CTO Craft
From the CTO Craft Blog
Learn how to conduct successful 1:1s with your team by ensuring you don't make these three common mistakes.
Seasoned engineering manager Isabel Nyo shares her insights on performance management and metrics for getting the bigger picture.
Read of the Week
Imagine your team is building a set of houses. As you go to survey the houses, you notice that one is on fire. Someone outside asks you to put out the fire.
Oh no! You can spring to action and start pouring water on the fire. With some time and effort, you may get the fire to die down.
Or instead, you can look at all of the other houses in the block. You may notice something.
From our Partners
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The 1:1 meeting is the best way for managers and those who report to them to connect on pressing issues, develop a strong relationship, and ensure that employees feel like they are working towards their personal, team and company goals.
Putting in place a proper framework, agenda, tone, asking the right questions, the setting of goals makes the 1:1 meeting motivational, impactful and aligns you and your team in achieving your mutual aspirations.
Remember to use the code “indeedSEVERALwind” for £100 off the ticket price
Culture & People
Succeeding at a project in an organization is like pushing a boulder up a hill that is too heavy for any single person to lift. It doesn’t make sense to ask what the “root cause of success” is for an effort like this, because it’s a collaboration that requires the work of many different people to succeed. It’s not meaningful to single out a particular individual as the reason the boulder made it to the top.
Output over time is a good way to measure the impact of machines, not knowledge workers. You may have heard the phrase “what gets measured gets managed.” So when we want something done, we slap a metric on it and manage toward that metric. Seems reasonable enough, right? It’s not, though.
If you’re paying attention to any current conversations on business agility you’ve undoubtedly heard that, in many ways, its success hinges on your company’s ability to move away from outputs and towards outcomes.
Accountability vs responsibility. What do these words mean, and why should you care? How do they relate to helping you be successful? How do they relate to creating an organizational system where people work together to realize the goals of an organization?
The performance management system has evolved to document bad behavior to a business driver and the way performance management discussions are conducted has dramatically improved. Some organizations proclaim they have eliminated the classic performance appraisal system.
Leadership & Self-management
When I first became a union leader, I thought I could just wing it. It became apparent that I was letting my team down, so I had to give up my fly-by-night approach to leadership and adopt a framework.
People affirm your abilities, but you don’t believe you’re as amazing as they say. You have an extensive list of achievements, but you’d struggle to name just a few. Opportunities keep coming your way, but you don’t feel like the best person for the job.
As a CTO, I’ve worked with a number of businesses. Some are creating their first MVP and some are well-established technology leaders. Working with these kinds of organizations, it’s shocking how often the realities of software development are ignored.
When you start your management job, you are all excited. You get to know your team, and every day is special. It takes a year to settle. Another year to become confident. In the third year, you notice that you are bored. Why? When you are leading one team for a while, it is a lot of fun.
Agile, Engineering & Product
There’s a common and highly destructive pattern I’m seeing time and again (and likely you have too). The leadership team falls in love with a big idea and turns it into a big project. This project becomes the top priority—apparently the future of the company depends on it.
For a service to be up 99.99999% of the time, it can only be down at most 3 seconds every year. Unfortunately, achieving that milestone is a herculean task, even for the most experienced site reliability engineering teams. Visualizing service uptime is essential for all types of engineers.
There’s an aspect of Domain-Driven Design that rarely gets talked about. I think it’s the most important aspect of DDD, yet if you search online for “Domain-Driven Design”, you won’t find it. This treasure has been hiding in plain sight all along.
Usually, when we talk about agile teams, we are referring to agile product teams so the first question that comes up is what is so different about Component or Platform agile teams.
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Have an amazing week!