8 min read

🐝 CTO vs CPTO Pros and Cons, Kitchen Nightmares, Clarity, Diverse Hiring, Monte Carlo, Tech Specs, Burnout vs Bore-out: TMW #361

This issue of Tech Manager Weekly is sponsored by Campus: a learning platform and career accelerator for senior technology leaders

Hello, hello, hello! Welcome to 2024!

What's your holiday period been like? Did you get a chance to recharge your batteries? What's your mindset moving into the new year? We'd love to hear from you - drop us a reply here if you'd like to chat.

CTO Craft are starting the year strong, with planning flying along for CTO Craft Con: London in May and some big new additions to Campus.

Super Early Bird tickets are still available for CTO Craft Con, which is happening on May 8th and 9th at the QEII Centre in Westminster - we'll be launching the full agenda next week, but already confirmed are Matej Pjajfar, CTO of Monzo, Gergely Orosz, editor of the Pragmatic Engineer, Charity Majors, CTO of Honeycomb and Laura Tacho, CTO of DX. There'll also be themed roundtables, brilliant networking, and live streaming of the event if you can't make it to London.

As a subscriber, you can use the access code "Community-May-24" when buying your ticket to enable the community-only price of £549 - live stream tickets will be on sale shortly. See you there!

On Campus, this week sees the launch of our new course, Minimum Effective Employer Branding, with James Ellis, author and internationally-recognised expert in the field of employer brand. James walks you through the simplest and least resource-intensive ways to make your engineering team attractive to the right people in the shortest possible time. A must-see.

Campus costs £399 per year for access to all courses, a huge video library, assessments and other learning tools for CTOs and senior leaders looking to up their game. Come and take a look!

That's it - let's get 2024 started! See you next time

Andy @ CTO Craft

Campus by CTO Craft: The Go-to Resource for Senior Technology Leaders
Created for CTOs, by CTOs: A transformative learning community for senior technology leaders in startups and scale-ups
CTO Craft Con: London | 8-9 May 2024
CTO Craft Con will bring together over 400 Chief Technology Officers and other senior technology leaders from the most exciting start-ups, scale-ups, unicorns, and big tech companies to elevate their engineering culture in London, May 2024

CTO Craft Events

CTO Craft Bytes: Remote Realities - What does Culture mean now?
Is Culture Dead? In this Bytes session, we delve into what Culture means and how a CTO leads a team in a remote-working world.
CTO Craft Mixer: Manchester
Network and learn with fellow senior tech leaders and CTO Craft members at The Old Monkey pub in Manchester.
CTO Craft Mixer: Amsterdam
Network and learn with fellow CTOs, CTO Craft community members and aspiring tech leaders in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Reads of the Week

Practical Magic: Improving Productivity and Happiness for Software Development Teams
Co-authors: Max Kanat-Alexander and Grant Jenks

About our Sponsors

Thanks as always to all the amazing sponsors helping CTO Craft bring you resources like this newsletter, our events, community and more:

AWS, Albany Partners, Code Climate, HeadChannel, Google Cloud, Vention, Jellyfish, 101 Ways, Polly, Skiller Whale, Softwire, Sema, Uplevel, YLD

Leadership, Strategy & Business

Pros and cons of combining the CTO and CPO roles
This article explores advantages and challenges of combining the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Chief Product Officer (CPO) roles in a business.
This Is the Person Selling Your Product
What I wish someone had told me about sales when I was starting my career in tech
6 Things Managers Can Learn From Kitchen Nightmares
..or “how not to be a donut”
How to Clarify Your Thinking To Solve Leadership Obstacles – Scott Cochrane

Culture, People & Teams

3 areas to drive clarity for sustained high-performance in teams
How providing clarity of purpose, direction, plan, roles and boundaries lead to sustained high-performance
My Diverse Hiring Playbook - Jacob Kaplan-Moss
I’m really proud of my track record building diverse teams. When I’ve been responsible for hiring, those teams have consistently been more diverse than industry norms, often significantly so. Over the years, I’ve developed a set of “plays”, some go-to tactics for increasing the diversity of my hiring pipeline. This is that playbook.
End of Year Pay Report 2023 | Levels.fyi
View compensation trends, top paying companies, cities & more
The Power of Coaching in Self-Managing Organizations - Blog
Breadcrumbs list

Technology, Operations & Delivery

The Flaw of Averages — Comparing Monte Carlo Simulations with Estimates based on Averages
Some weeks ago, my boss challenged me: Why do we need to run those 10′000 simulations when doing Monte Carlo forecasts? Could we not use…
We invested 10% to pay back tech debt; Here’s what happened
Why and how we continuously invested the team bandwidth to pay back tech debt and what were the results?
How to Write Great Tech Specs
A comprehensive guide on writing great Tech Specs (🎁 Includes Template!)
A Skeptic’s Guide to Software Architecture Decisions
Skepticism is an architectural superpower that helps you to see through false assumptions before you have followed them too far before they have cost you too much time and created so much work that you’ll never completely recover.

Stress, Wellbeing & Growth

From Spark to Smolder: Understanding and Battling Burnout in the Modern Age
Its best to understand how to deal with anxiety.
A Simple Hack to Help You Communicate More Effectively
Using a structured approach when communicating can help you prioritize what you need to convey. In this article, the author introduces his “What, So What, Now What” framework. Much like the Swiss Army knife, known for its versatility and reliability, this structure is flexible and can be used in many different communication situations. The structure is comprised of three simple questions: 1) What: Describe and define the facts, situation, product, position, etc. 2) So What: Discuss the implications or importance for the audience. In other words, the relevance to them. 3) Now What: Outline the call-to-action or next steps such as taking questions or setting up a next meeting.
Can Workplaces Have Too Much Psychological Safety?
It is certainly important for people in some jobs to feel safe to speak up, make mistakes, take risks, or ask for help. They include jobs that involve creativity, learning, and exploration. But five studies of workers in a variety of frontline jobs found that more is not always more when it comes to psychological safety. Previous research had focused only on the average effects, which, of course, are made up of high scores and low scores. But psychological safety is not an “either/or” outcome; it is a question of degree. The authors found that when you move from average to high levels of psychological safety, performance in routine jobs actually declined.
Maybe It’s Not Burnout, but Boreout
It seems like burnout, but not due to jadedness, but more so in a state of being uninspiring and not exciting anymore.

That’s it!

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Have an amazing week!