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For Engineering Managers
For Directors of Engineering
For VPs of Engineering
Topic - 26 Stories
VP of Engineering at Puzzle
Being a leader does not mean you will always be popular, and that’s okay
After being promoted to a managerial role, the author had to make tough decisions to ensure the team was delivering on their goals. They revised the performance metrics of all six team members and one of the two under-performers stepped up. However, the other one didn't follow along and the author had to terminate their employment. The author learned that as a manager, they had to be willing to make decisions that make friends and peers uncomfortable if it was in the team's and company's best interest, and to ask for advice from HR, the Director, or other managers.
Director of Engineering at Expedia Group
Standing up for an Employee in Trouble
A conflict arose between two teams when one team wanted to contribute code to an application owned by the other team. One of the junior engineers made some optimization suggestions which were not taken well by the other team, leading to bullying. The manager of the first team intervened by getting the full story and speaking to the manager of the other team. The engineers apologized for their inappropriate language and the incident was used as an example of how not to behave. The manager learned the importance of conflict resolution and protecting their team.
CTO and co-founder at PandaDoc
Building an International Organization
This article discusses the challenges of starting a business in Belarus, a small country with limited access to sales and marketing talent. It outlines the steps taken to overcome these challenges, such as focusing on the international market, establishing a sales function, growing in the local market, creating a communication channel between two offices, and hiring people early on. It also emphasizes the importance of team building and hiring the right people in order to scale and move forward.
VP of Engineering at TrueML
Contractors: Know When to Hold ‘Em, Know When to Fold ‘Em
The author was promoted to Director and inherited a team of 10 contractors and one junior FTE. After assessing the situation, the author created a hiring plan to reduce contractor headcount and hire more senior full-time engineers. Through creative problem solving, the author was able to bring up a new group of engineers in New York City and increase customer satisfaction by 50%. The author learned that contractors can be a quick fix but their incentives are not always aligned with the business, and that it is important to think outside the box to use resources that might not be obvious.
Sr. Manager, Data Engineering, AI at Unity Technologies
Leading a Team: A Short Introduction to Chaos
When joining a small Big Data Engineering team in chaos, the leader had to figure out how to set a vision and roadmap for the team. Through meaningful exercises, the team was able to build a shared vision and mission statement, and set objectives to achieve their goals. The team was able to turn around and hire new talent, and the team still exists today. The key lessons learned were to build a shared vision, put the team through meaningful exercises, and communicate the vision to the rest of the organization.
Vice President - Product Management & Design at IndeedFlex ( Indeed.com)
Establishing the Goals for an Acquired Organization
A year ago, the author joined the office of a startup bought by their current company with the intent to expand their product across the US and globally. Through conversations with stakeholders and user research, the author proposed a flywheel structure and identified critical narratives and key metrics to measure performance. They also identified four future value streams and personas, and set goals for each vertical with key metrics. The team grew from two to ten members, and the business increased 8x in the next year according to the current plan. The author learned to build trust, think about users when building the team, not rush to hire people, and go deep to add value.
Head of Digital Product at Better Place Forests
Simultaneously Transitioning Two Offices from Waterfall to Agile
A consultant was brought in to roll out Agile to a 50 person engineering team across two offices. The consultant worked with the VP of Engineering and Product to develop pods aligned to business objectives, and then brought in a consultant to each office for 2 days of Scrum Master training. The consultant then provided coaching and guidance for each team for two months, and worked with the executive leadership team to set expectations around adoption and velocity. The lessons learned were that it is important to start with one team/pod that has practiced Agile before, and to roll out Agile to teams one at a time, allowing each team to adopt to Agile at their own pace. It is also important for all team members to have training and it's best if the team can do the training together.
Aravind Valloor Mana
Engineering Manager at Broadcom
Motivating the Team Spirit
When transitioning from an engineering role to a leadership role, it is important to have a significant change in attitude. Instead of providing solutions, ask questions and let the team come up with their own solutions. This will help them grow and build trust in the leader. Allow the team to discuss any issues they have without fear of judgement and create an environment where they can try new ideas. Focus on solutions rather than pointing fingers and make sure the team feels safe to tell the leader about any issues.
VP of Product at Zenchef France
Product, Engineering and Transformation Leader - ex ManoMano/Airbus
VP Engineering at Akeneo
CTO at Reddit
Founding engineer at Reddit, passionate about mentorship and public speaking.
VP of Engineering at Kiddom, Inc.
Engineering executive • ex-Affirm | Square | Google
Staff Software Engineer at Slack
Salesforce veteran and ex-Ebay
Director of Engineering at Wish
Passionate technical leader driving product engineering and platform while building high performance teams at scale
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Chief Technology Officeer at Michael McNally (Michael McNally)
Facebook vs. Google: 10 Contrasts for Engineering Careers
This article provides an overview of the differences between Google and Facebook as places for a software engineering career. It is based on the author's personal experience at both companies, and highlights the strengths and weaknesses of each. It is ultimately up to the individual to decide which company is the best fit for them, as either could lead to success or disappointment. The article also provides links to the careers pages of both companies.
SVP Engineering at Trustly
Scaling Engineering @ Trustly
Trustly has seen significant growth in Europe and North America over the past year, with North America now representing close to half of total group revenue. In response, the Engineering team has doubled in size, expanding to 109 full-time employees across Brazil, Portugal, and the US. The team has evolved their road mapping and planning processes, and formalized the idea of a Technology Tribe to dedicate Engineering resources for Scalability, Reliability, Security, and Resiliency. The team looks forward to continued growth and evolution in 2022.
Sr Product Manager at Blume Global
The Move From Manager to Senior Manager
The author was tasked with developing a product from scratch and was successful in doing so. However, when they were promoted to a senior product manager role, they faced challenges such as time management, switching contexts, and leaving the product they had developed. To overcome these challenges, the author managed their time wisely, held thorough discussions with product people, and held weekly meetings with direct reports. Through this, they learned the importance of communication and increasing pressure taking capacity of team members.
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