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management

Lead Time Chat

My friend Jean and I recorded a little video for her Lead Time Chat series on the topic of coaching. Some topics we covered… The difference between an external coach and a manager. Working with an external coach across multiple jobs. Finding a good fit with a coach. Whether an engineering background is what you […]

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management

Leading your engineering team with ‘experiments’ not ‘processes’

My first post for the LeadDev… Many teams have the same fear when it comes to a new manager: they fear the process monster. Process monster (n): a manager for whom the answer is always, always ‘process’. The process monster will add more and more processes to the team until the team collapses under the […]

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management

Supermanagers Podcast

I recorded an episode of the Supermanagers podcast and it was really fun! We talked about many things including the importance of coachability, why you should get rid of your boring meetings, and the worst manager I ever had. Listen on: [iTunes] [Spotify] [Google Play] [Anchor]

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management

You can fix your hiring process: Here’s your five-step plan

My latest in Quartz… As a manager who has usually taken over teams that have been struggling in some way, there is something that I’ve consistently had to do: fix the hiring process. Hiring well is a huge lever for team transformation. Getting it right doesn’t just mean hiring good people (although that part is crucial), […]

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management quartz

Hotfixes for your Newly Remote Team

As many of us accept the new reality, hair increasingly wild, and perhaps having embraced a pandemic wardrobe (daytime pajamas are a legit work outfit now), there’s no return to the office in sight for those of us who can work remotely. It’s time to consider some of the ways in which our teams are […]

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Career management

Remote Work Discussion on Channel 4 News

I was on the UK’s Channel 4 news talking about remote work, you can see the video which is provocatively titled “‘Economy could be at a standstill if we don’t get people back into work’ – businesswoman Linda Plant”. I do get the concerns about the economy, social interaction, and creativity. But, I think we […]

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management

Remote-team managers can learn a lot from open-source communities

My latest in Quartz… It is truly a difficult and emotionally exhausting time to be a manager. Even those who are used to managing remotely are having to navigate the shifting expectations and chaos of disrupted lives and disrupted businesses. Of course, some people deal with that level of disruption by trying to increase control. […]

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Career management quartz

The only truthful answer to any question about management

My latest in Quartz… With a few other people, I run a Slack chat group for engineering managers. We’ve made some deliberate choices—for example, we don’t have a channel for #inclusion. Every so often this comes up, and we invoke our argument: Inclusion is central to good management, so all channels are inclusion channels. We […]

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management

Mastering New Leadership Styles

“The best leaders master multiple leadership styles”, blithely comments some post on leadership. OK, including one written by me. But how? Many leaders are overly reliant on a style and this can hold them back. Generally leadership styles are a function of emotional intelligence, and working on emotional intelligence, such as working on becoming more […]

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management

How to build—and manage—a self-improving team

My latest in Quartz… A lot of things in management become clearer when you realize it’s much easier to measure a team’s progress than its state. A team produces 30 units of “x” in a week. Is this good? Well, we could start by asking what the value of each unit is, or by looking […]