SWLW #592: Advice that I can't get out of my head, The Compass vs. Map method, and more

A weekly newsletter by Oren Ellenbogen with the best content I found around people, culture and leadership in tech. You can also read this issue online and recommend this newsletter to your teammates for a great discussion.

Like always, sharing my best findings for the week. 

 

This Week's Favorite


Advice That I Can't Get Out of My Head
8 minutes read.

What I love most about this post is its terrific insights (The insights around The Durability of Leadership and Burnout were my favorites), how they were picked, and why they're helpful. This is a powerful framework to consider when you listen to others' advice.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



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Culture


Trying to Get CI Working on a New Repo.
1 minute read.

My humble effort to help you start the weekend with a smile on your face.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



Prioritization Isn't a Tool Problem. It's a Strategy Problem. (Video)
4 minutes read.

I find presenting the chosen optimization factors with a few "X even over Y" can help clarify for the team where to focus their energy and time. Short, memorable, and actionable for decision-making by the entire team.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



Vanity Metrics LOL
3 minutes read.

Adam Thackeray shares a brilliant take that might open your mind to what you measure today and whether or not it's helpful: "These [vanity] metrics look great in a report but don’t tell you ANYTHING about the value of the work being done or if you are delivering on the expected outcomes. …and don’t take the bait on vanity metrics. Dig deeper. Measure what matters."

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



Setting Clearer Expectations: The Compass vs. Map Method
4 minutes read.

Laura Tacho shares a framing that was an eye-opener for me. We should give our team a map (vs. a compass) to cover the details and constraints to be successful and align our expectations: "I’ve spent hundreds of hours coaching engineering leaders, and even for very senior teams, people often need more direction than we think they do. Specifically, the key piece of information that helps teams succeed is “what’s not enough.” We get this in the map method, by sharing the minimum result, or by sharing an anti-pattern that may cause the team to think they’re doing fine."

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



Jobs [sponsored]


 

 Looking to hire for your team? Promote your open positions on SWLW! 



Peopleware


High Agency: What Is It, Why It Is Important, and How to Cultivate It
5 minutes read.

"Some Go-Getters become Game-Changers by using their High Agency to get better at their craft and improve their talent. When hiring, I prefer Go-Getters over Frustrated Geniuses. Never compromise on Integrity, not even for Game-Changers." -- Check out Shreyas Doshi's definition of skills & traits individuals with High Agency have. Always start with the language you use (using proactive language), first with yourself and then when talking to others.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



Early-Stage Startups: It's All About Depth, Not Breadth
3 minutes read.

Jen Abel's advice is also useful for internal products you build. You can try to build something for all of the engineering teams (for example, a new testing platform), or you can focus on a few critical teams and start there. If these teams are important enough internally (perception), use them to build the credibility (social proof) you need to get other teams to adopt it.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



The “I Don’t Like What They’re Saying, So They Shouldn’t Be Allowed to Say It” Approach to Crisis Management
5 minutes read.

"While some see leadership as bold and courageous decision making in the face of a difficult situation, I would argue that covering one’s ears and humming in the face of after-the-fact questions shows a lack of leadership in the moment. The alternative to the “I don’t like what they’re saying so they shouldn’t be allowed to say it” approach is to embrace transparency, openness, and accountability." -- Ben Balter captures so elegantly how a leader should act when making difficult decisions.

Read it later via Pocket or Instapaper.
Share it via Twitter or email.



And finally, inspiring tweets...


@david_perell: If your writing is falling flat, it might be that you're trying to write an audience. But you aren't writing to a crowd. You're writing to specific people at a specific moment in time. And they're alone. Some are on their couch, others are waiting in line, others are reading in bed. No matter how big the numbers are, basically all your readers are alone when they're with you.

@jasonlk: When the “exit” comes, the money rarely buys happiness. When the IPO comes, it’s great, but It’s back to work the next day. The happiness you are looking for, find it on the journey, too


p.s. if you're interested in joining SWLW's Slack channel, simply reply to this email and let me know. If you're leading a team, consider writing your Manager README (it's free) or getting my e-book and interviews Leading Snowflakes: The New Engineering Manager's Handbook. You can also support me by becoming a SWLW Patron. Thank you ❤️




Keep reading, keep learning.
-- Oren Ellenbogen.

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Older messages

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