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Tech Manager Weekly by CTO Craft - Issue #173

Hi everyone! Welcome to the week

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Until next time!

Andy @ CTO Craft

Models for conflict resolution - choose the right one for you | CTO Craft

Models for conflict resolution - choose the right one for you | CTO Craft

"Workplace conflict often isn’t just an argument between team members or overbearing leadership. Thinking it is – or denying that conflict in your workplace exists at all – is the reason some internal discord never gets sorted out for good. Instead, conflict can be far more pervasive, multi-faceted and complex – and therefore damaging – if it is not understood and subsequently addressed correctly."

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Reads of the Week

How (some) good corporate engineering blogs are written

I've been comparing notes with people who run corporate engineering blogs and one thing that I think is curious is that it's pretty common for my personal blog to get more traffic than the entire corporate engineering blog..

Maximize your team: How I created an Engineering Roadmap

Engineering results are sometimes hard to quantify. A roadmap changes everything. Software engineering is hard and complicated. It’s even harder to convey the value to your company leaders.

Culture & People

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.

Let’s Talk About Change Fatigue

Let’s Talk About Change Fatigue

For those on the front lines of an organizational change I’m sure you’ve heard this a time or two. Perhaps you’ve even said it yourself. A typical response is, “It never ends. Look how fast the world is changing…it’s here to stay.”

Help me understand you

I am preparing to welcome a new team member, and I am excited to reinforce my practice of effective 1:1s. The first few 1:1s with a new team member can feel awkward. In a way it is like a new relationship where both sides try to guess what the other person means to say and to avoid hurting feelings.

Pointless Job Requirements

Pointless Job Requirements

This isn't rocket science — but it is apparently something that still needs to be said. Putting requirements in your job advert that the job doesn't absolutely require gets you a less qualified pool of applicants.

Performance management post-COVID-19: things to consider

Performance management post-COVID-19: things to consider

Performance management conversations can be a daunting experience for managers and employees when they are not carried out properly. During a pandemic where there is a lot of uncertainty and economic downturn, employees’ worries are likely to be amplified.

When your coworker does great work, tell their manager

I’ve been thinking recently about anti-racism and what it looks like to support colleagues from underrepresented groups at work.

Leadership & Self-management

Eigenquestions: The Art of Framing Problems

Eigenquestions: The Art of Framing Problems

When done well, framing can steer the company, product, and team through tricky situations. When done poorly, we can feel stuck, frustrated, and like we're debating for an unnecessarily long period of time or are zeroed in on the minutiae of a decision.

That ‘Brain Fog’ You’re Feeling Is Perfectly Normal

That ‘Brain Fog’ You’re Feeling Is Perfectly Normal

A few weeks ago, I read a piece in The Atlantic about how Shakespeare wrote great works when quarantined due to the bubonic plague. On Twitter, I’ve seen cheery proclamations that sheltering-in-place will spark increased productivity and creativity.

This Advice From Google's Top Productivity Trainer May Completely Change How You Spend Your Day

This Advice From Google's Top Productivity Trainer May Completely Change How You Spend Your Day

We all want to be more productive, but how do we actually make it happen? Most of us look for timesaving tips and tricks -- use your calendar as a motivational tool! Take a break for moderate exercise during the day so you have more energy for work!

How To Say No

How To Say No

Andy says: "A fantastic resource of constructive and thoughtful ways to turn people down when you need to - a vital skill for all leaders"

Your Mid-Year Leadership Check-in

A satisfying aspect of the new book was I achieved the intended goal of providing actionable advice. After a brief introduction, I list the 30 specific practices you can start with today to improve different aspects of leadership.

Agile, Engineering & Product

In search of higher engineering productivity: A data first remote working perspective

In search of higher engineering productivity: A data first remote working perspective

At Echobox, we constantly strive for maximum productivity. We regularly review our existing processes and are open to exploring new ways of working as a team. It’s part of our DNA at Echobox to be data-driven and take a scientific approach to everything we do.

Opportunity Mapping: An Essential Skill for Driving Product Outcomes

Opportunity Mapping: An Essential Skill for Driving Product Outcomes

The following is an excerpt from my upcoming book, Continuous Discovery Habits. It’s the opening to my chapter on Opportunity Mapping. Read to the end for an exciting new announcement. As you collect customers’ stories, you are going to hear about countless needs, pain points, and desires.

How to do a code review

The pages in this section contain recommendations on the best way to do code reviews, based on long experience. All together they represent one complete document, broken up into many separate sections.

"No Estimates" is not the (only) Answer or: Moving towards Predictability

"No Estimates" is not the (only) Answer or: Moving towards Predictability

Dear No Estimators: You are probably estimating, even if you don’t admit it. When you say something is “small” or “easy”; when you say “yes I think we can get that done” or “these are about the same size for flow” or “these are about the same over time”, you are estimating.

Say Goodbye to Ivory Tower Scrum: 3 Keys to Adapting Agile at an Agency

Say Goodbye to Ivory Tower Scrum: 3 Keys to Adapting Agile at an Agency

The three keys outlined in this article will help product managers in agency settings implement Agile more effectively. Most modern tech companies rely on Scrum and Agile to create flexible, efficient and results-based digital customer experiences.

What Else?

Facebook is simulating users’ bad behavior using AI

Facebook is simulating users’ bad behavior using AI

Facebook’s engineers have developed a new method to help them identify and prevent harmful behavior like users spreading spam, scamming others, or buying and selling weapons and drugs.

That’s it!

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Have an amazing week!

Andy