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Clippings Posts

Optimizing Bugs Fix Policy

I am sure you are familiar with the following scenario: a user is reporting to your Support team that something is not working for him as expected. Your Support team investigates the issue and agrees that there is a bug in the system. They open a JIRA bug to the R&D department with all the information they have collected, as expected from them. But then… a furious argument begins on the ticket. Support is saying that they think R&D should solve this bug within a week. The Customer Success Manager is saying this is a critical customer just before renewal. Therefore we need to make all of the effort to solve it within 48 hours, but R&D doesn’t see this as an urgent matter and thinks the bug should be solved within 30 days. Who is right?!

The Speed of Innovation

Bottom line here is: have transparency and clear communication on decisions and tradeoffs, while having flexibility to align with business priorities and meet hard deadlines, if needed.

How to hire an engineering manager: from within or without?

I am a firm believer that you always, always owe your existing team first crack at any and every opportunity that arises from within. It may not always be possible; you may need someone with more experience or a different skillset than you have on your team, but you owe it to your team to seriously explore the possibility, every time, before you give in and begin to explore outside possibilities.

10 questions to ask in a job interview that will really expose a company’s culture

Culture is felt through the behaviors that are reinforced or discouraged on a day-to-day basis on teams. If you want to get a sense of the story of the leader and team’s culture, use detailed questions. You will get a much better sense based on the responses, especially if the leader struggles to think of what to say. If you are a manager, prepare to answer detailed questions that illustrate your team’s culture. 

What Working Dads Can Do When a High-Pressure Job Asks Too Much

Today’s working fathers care about success both in their careers and at home. They take pride in being good providers for their families and dedicating the time and effort necessary to be loving fathers, partners, and spouses. But many find that their career success cuts both ways. Some find themselves enmeshed in a career that, while it has many merits, may no longer fit their full range of life priorities, especially as fathers, and keeps them from feeling fully successful at work and home.

The Last Bus Problem

The fundamental lesson here is that for any repeating process it is important to consider both planning horizons and cycle time and the impact those have on the incentives they create for teams. When possible, having transparency about long term schedules and more continuous evaluation processes will remove gamesmanship from the equation and allow teams to focus primarily on the problem they are trying to solve.

The Architecture Behind A One-Person Tech Startup

I wouldn’t be able to do this without the vast amount of open-source software and managed services at my disposal. I feel like I’m standing on the shoulders of giants, who did all the hard work before me, and I’m very grateful for that.