Hi everyone! Welcome to the week
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Don't forget - the next CTO Craft Bytes event is this Friday, on the subject of Agile Leadership. There are some incredible people on the panel - Emily Webber, Jenny Martin and Giles Lindsay are all well-known experts on the subject, and the session will be packed with vital insights and discussions. Miss it at your peril!
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Until next time!
Andy @ 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
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..
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
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.
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.”
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.
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 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.
I’ve been thinking recently about anti-racism and what it looks like to support colleagues from underrepresented groups at work.
Leadership & Self-management
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.
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.
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!
Andy says: "A fantastic resource of constructive and thoughtful ways to turn people down when you need to - a vital skill for all leaders"
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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