7 min read

Tech Manager Weekly by CTO Craft - Issue #170

Hey there! Good to see you

Exciting times - we now have a start date for the next Mentoring Circle! The first Circle session will happen w/c August 3rd, but there are still a couple of slots available. If you're interested in joining, check out the Mentoring Circles page and get in touch, but be quick!

Some more great news here at CTO Craft - we have two new members of the team, Rachel Murray, our Content Manager, and Valentina Colombo, our Events and Sponsorship Manager. We're super-excited to have you both on board!

Just so you know, all recordings of our CTO Craft Bytes events are now on Youtube - check them out, and subscribe if you'd like to know when new recordings are uploaded

🎥  CTO Craft on Youtube 🎥

Thanks to our sponsors this week, AWS and Haystack! Reply to this email if you’d like to know more about partnering with CTO Craft

Andy @ CTO Craft

From Zero to CTO – Donovan Frew

From Zero to CTO – Donovan Frew

I’ve been a technologist for the past 20 years. I studied Computer Science at university in Jamaica and spent the formative years of my career there working on a number of projects in collaboration with companies such as IBM, Peoplesoft and Nortel Networks.

Why You Need to Bridge Business and Engineering with Autonomy

Why You Need to Bridge Business and Engineering with Autonomy

To create a remarkable engineering team—one that is driving the whole company forward—CTOs have to make a conscious effort to bridge the gap between business and engineering.

From our Partners

Explore the Data Flywheel - AWS

Explore the Data Flywheel - AWS

How can you build your Data Flywheel? Download this free eBook and learn steps to help your organization by creating momentum in your modern data management process, leveraging purpose-built databases and analytics and building real business differentiation.

Software Development Metrics: The Ultimate Guide - Haystack

Software Development Metrics: The Ultimate Guide - Haystack

Our collection of metrics, patterns and best practices used by world-class engineering leaders. We'll guide you through process metrics that help improve speed, throughput, and quality on your team - while preventing issues like burnout and over optimization. Plus tips on how to spot bottlenecks, blockers, and burnout on your team.

🥝 🥝 If you’re interested in seeing our Partnership Opportunities, drop a reply to this email! 🥝 🥝

Read of the Week

Remote Leadership Doesn’t Mean Remote Control

Remote Leadership Doesn’t Mean Remote Control

In 1964 the first remote control for a TV was created. Sometime after that, the TV watching experience changed forever. The remote made it easier to watch and control the television. Quite possibly earlier this year you created a remote team.  You may not have wanted one, but here you are.

Culture & People

When it comes to team communication, faster isn’t always better

When it comes to team communication, faster isn’t always better

Advice, observations, and real-life examples. Many companies forced to suddenly go remote are compensating with more communication, whether in back-to-back-to-back video calls or all-day team chats, with expectations—stated or implied—that people respond to messages as quickly as possible.

Ask the EM: Can You Really Measure Individual Developer Productivity?

Ask the EM: Can You Really Measure Individual Developer Productivity?

A reader asks a question that comes up at some point in every engineer's and engineering manager's career, where their manager, or the one above will pop the question. Can you measure engineering productivity? And if so, how can we measure it right now? They ask: I have the opposite belief.

Unlocking value with durable teams

Unlocking value with durable teams

Over the past six months, my group at the Financial Times has moved from project-based teams to durable teams. In this post I’ll explain why we made that move and how this is helping us deliver bigger and better things for our customers. Our goal on Customer Products is to make FT.

The Goal Fits the Team

The Goal Fits the Team

Since I first started writing about OKRs seven years ago, I have had a lot of companies reach out to me for advice. OKRs were originally envisioned to create focus on things that are important but not (yet) urgent. OKRs act as an accelerant on progress toward strategic efforts.

Leadership & Self-management

To Improve Your Efficiency, Match Your Highest Priority Work to Your Most Productive Hours

To Improve Your Efficiency, Match Your Highest Priority Work to Your Most Productive Hours

When was the last time you assessed your personal productivity system? Many people start each day with a plan, but soon find themselves distracted, focusing on low-value tasks and, simply, procrastinating.

How Do You Measure Leadership?

How Do You Measure Leadership?

Are you a good leader? How do you know? In a startup culture that is obsessed with management by metrics, many founders struggle to answer this critical question about themselves. It’s tempting to measure leaders simply by the success of their businesses.

Getting promoted to dev team lead

Getting promoted to dev team lead

Three years into my software engineering career and loving it. Life was great. I lived in a small apartment in Southie (Boston) with my college roommate “Q”. I had a good job at a tech start-up called CloudLock. I hammered out code 12-14 hours a day.

How To Overcome Dread Tasks

How To Overcome Dread Tasks

There are things you want to do. There are things you need to do. Sometimes these are the same. This post is how to handle life when they aren’t. The sensation of thinking of a task can be pleasant or painful.

Avoid Burnout and Start Saying No. Here’s How.

Avoid Burnout and Start Saying No. Here’s How.

A lot of first-time leaders say yes too frequently. They say yes to every request or interruption. They say yes because they want to please people, or they feel guilty, and sometimes fear. Another reason new leaders say yes is that they don’t know how to say no.

Agile, Engineering & Product

Does scrum ruin great engineers or are you doing it wrong?

Does scrum ruin great engineers or are you doing it wrong?

A question on Stack Overflow’s Software Engineering site caught our attention recently. It tries to come to terms with the impact of scrum on developers' ability to do a great job. The claim is a bold one: Scrum is turning good developers into average ones. Could that be true?

A Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day at Slack

A Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day at Slack

This story describes the technical details of the problems that caused the Slack downtime on May 12th, 2020. To learn more about the process behind incident response for same outage, read Ryan Katkov’s post, “All Hands on Deck”.

What I've learned while ramping up on a large software project

In mid-March, I started my new role as a Senior Software Engineer at GitHub. Yes, I started a job in the middle of a pandemic. The company brings on new joiners every two weeks for a structured onboarding process, and my cohort was the first to not be flown to San Francisco for it.

Product Judgment: How some people can repeatedly create product success

Product Judgment: How some people can repeatedly create product success

Let’s talk about that trickiest of subjects: Product Judgment.

Shopify's Data Science & Engineering Foundations

Shopify's Data Science & Engineering Foundations

At Shopify, our mission is to make commerce better for everyone. With over one million businesses in more than 175 countries, Shopify is a mini-economy with merchants, partners, buyers, carriers, and payment providers all interacting.

What Else?

A Startup Is Selling Referrals for Jobs at Facebook, Google, and Amazon

A Startup Is Selling Referrals for Jobs at Facebook, Google, and Amazon

If you’re looking for a job at a tech company like Facebook, Amazon, or Google, you’re probably also looking for a referral.

That’s it!

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Have an amazing week!

Andy