9 min read

🐋 Cognitive Load, Power vs Authority, Technical Coherence, Cycle Times, Post-Mortems, Coaching for CTOs, Neurodivergence: TMW #377

More Mixer events are on the horizon, get all the details here!
Thanks to Vention for sponsoring this issue of Tech Manager Weekly - partnering with innovative companies from startups to Fortune 500s, lending AI engineering expertise to propel them to new heights and the edge to outpace the competition.

Hello again, welcome to the week!

We're now only a week away from CTO Craft Con and have officially sold out - once again, a huge thank you to everyone who'll be attending, all the amazing speakers and panelists, our sponsors, the CTO Craft team members and all our other supporters.

If you weren't able to pick up a ticket to attend, virtual tickets are still available, so you can watch along from wherever you are in the world. Pick up yours here:

Ticket Types | CTO Craft Con London 2024
Online Live Stream & Recording Access £199+VAT Can’t join us in London? Get access to live stream or view the recordings in your own time Register Now We are sold out! We are sold out of attendee passes for CTO Craft Con: London! We now have a waiting list in place in the event of cancellations and spots becoming available. If you would like to join the waiting list, please register below. By joining the waiting list you also be the one of the first to hear about details for CTO Craft Con: London 2025. Join the Waiting List Not a member yet? It’s free! The membership pass is available to those who have been accepted as a member of the CTO Craft Community. The aim of the community is to provide a safe space for CTOs and Technology Leaders to meet and network, share their challenges and solutions, hear from more experienced leaders and engage. If you would like to join the community and benefit from the discount click the button below. Apply to Become a Member * PLEASE NOTE: We take care to only accept those leading teams of engineers. If you’re a recruiter or service provider and would like to speak to us about participating in CTO Craft Con you can request information on sponsorship opportunities here.

All ticket holders will have access to the recordings after the event, and they'll be uploaded to Campus for all members to access there as well.

Goncalo Silva, who'll be speaking at the conference, was kind enough to sit down with us to dig deeper into his talk about asynchronous communication and distributed teams. Have a look below for a sneak peek at what he'll be discussing

Conference Speaker Spotlight Q&A Gonçalo Silva | CTO Craft
Gonçalo Silva discusses asynchronous communication, which requires a set of habits that don’t come as naturally to the traditional workplace.

On with the links - see you next week!

Andy @ CTO Craft

CTO Craft Events

CTO Craft Con: London | 8-9 May 2024
CTO Craft Con will bring together over 500 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 Mixer: Gothenburg 2024
Join our community of CTOs and senior tech leaders for an informal meet-up in Gothenburg
CTO Craft Mixer: Manxchester 2024
Join our community of CTOs and senior tech leaders for an informal meet-up in Manchester.

Reads of the Week

The Tarzan Method - The Engineering Manager
Sometimes fixating on a career goal can make your ultimate destination worse. Instead, think about your career like Tarzan.
Cognitive Load for Knowledge Work
If you’re responsible for a budget that pays programmers or other knowledge workers, you probably care a great deal about getting good va…

From our Sponsors

On the express track to innovation with Vention

Sperry Rail drives the future of rail safety with innovative non-destructive testing. The company put its trust in Vention’s product discovery workshop, which resulted in a full-scale project conducted without a single derailment.

Read the Case Study

A huge thanks to all our sponsors and partners, who make Tech Manager Weekly and the CTO Craft community possible:

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

Leadership, Strategy & Business

Power vs. Authority (And Why it Matters in The Workplace)
How do some people have much power in the workplace without an authority position? Or why some authorities don’t wield much power? In this post, we’ll go over the difference between power and authority and help you understand how to cultivate both without going overboard.
Simple suggestions for technology investment.
In the future, everyone will be an engineer - but is that good?
Some thoughts on how AI’s impact on software engineering will play out, and what we can learn from other industries on what that means for all of us in software.
Do We Really Need Managers? | David Burkus
Do we really need managers? More than you might think.

Culture, People & Teams

Abolish Performance Reviews
Where I rant about how broken annual performance reviews are today.
Celebrating Failure
A small mindset change from “tolerating” to “celebrating” mistakes can benefit the person and the organization through learning and system improvements, increasing innovation, transparency, and resilience – if it’s done well, being mindful of all aspects and risks.
Technical Coherence | Jack Danger
Software development slows down over time. I wrote a whole book to help leaders reverse this slowdown and the central point of the book is a process any engineering leader can apply. I call this process Technical Coherence and you can mostly achieve it in a single meeting with your leaders. You can implement it in your org gradually or all at once. The central idea is this: We identify the necessary user experience domains for our products We identify the shared product domains that underpin multiple user experience domains We organize engineering into three layers, the top two correspond to the above domains and the third provides infrastructure.
The 37signals Guide to Internal Communication
The how, where, why, and when we communicate. Long form asynchronous? Real-time chat? In-person? Video? Verbal? Written? Via email? In Basecamp? How do we keep everyone in the loop without everyone getting tangled in everyone else’s business? It’s all in here.

Technology, Operations & Delivery

How to Move from Story Points and Magical Thinking to Cycle Time for Decisions - Johanna Rothman, Management Consultant
Are you trying to use story points for estimation? If so, you might have encountered these problems: Story points reflect the ideal thinking of the team, not the actual experience of the team. Your managers don’t want story points—they want durations and dates. In the absence of sufficient information, everyone makes up fiction (human stories) […]
The Wrong Way to Use DORA Metrics
Are you using DORA metrics as intended? Google says you might not be.
Learning From Failures: Leveraging Postmortems for Good - The Software Mentor
Learning From Failures: Leveraging Postmortems For Good
Software Architecture — Ships, Captains and Tides
A Seafaring Metaphor for Software Architects

Stress, Wellbeing & Growth

The Hagakure #80: Why Coaching (Really) Matters for Engineering Leadership
Are you an engineering leader? Did you go to engineering leadership school? I thought so. Because as far as I can tell there isn’t one. Sure, there are plenty of resources out there, from courses, to books, to podcasts, to an infinity of online articles and newsletters. But isn’t it a little strange that despite so much information, teams and companies continue to be so challenging for most leaders?
How to prevent burning out in the engineering industry
Richard, a mindset coach and a personal trainer shares his insights with us!
Possible: How to Transform Any Conflict | The Leading Blog: A Leadership Blog
Leadership Now is a leading source for leadership development and analysis. We believe that anyone can make a difference by leading from where they are.
Suzi McAlpine | The Art of Leadership | 4 expert tips to propel your neurodivergent superstars
Executive Coach, Leadership Coach, Workshop Facilitator, Professional Speaker

That’s it!

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Have an amazing week!