• Management

    Communication is empathy

    When I was working at Automattic, we used to say “Communication is oxygen“. I will communicate as much as possible, because it’s the oxygen of a distributed company. From the Automattic Creed But as an inner joke among fellow Automatticians was: too much oxygen kills. The importance of communication Books have been written on this topic but as a kind reminder, I will just point out what is the most important aspect of good communication in my personal opinion, with a specific focus on software engineering. Ready for the revelation?Here it is: The goal of good communication is to help our colleagues.And in doing so, helping ourselves. When we communicate with…

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    Uncategorized

    Just do it Now. Or, improve every day.

    The 1% marginal gains rule There has been quite a bit of buzz on the so-called 1% marginal gains rule. This “rule” became famous after Dave Brailsford, performance director of British Cycling, set about breaking down the objective of winning races into its component parts. The basic concept is easy: if we work on improving a mere 1% a day – or a week, or else – then the cumulative gain would be massive. Nothing new, really. Is the 1% marginal gain rule a recent concept? I don’t believe so. If we think about anything we do in our lives, a tiny bit of knowledge is added to our brain…

  • Management

    Communication is oxygen, they say…

    …And I could not agree more. So what is the role of us leads?Can we help our team with communication?Spoiler: of course we do, and it is one of our responsibilities.So how do we do it? Here are some ideas. Build and Share Your Manifesto Leads should be the first to communicate clearly and loud: Their expectations in terms of performance and communications How their teams should work What their style is How success is defined I personally do this as part of each onboarding session; leaving anything to chance has proven to be very dangerous, because everyone comes from different experiences. Taking our personal manifesto as starting point, we…

  • silhouette of man holding guitar on plant fields at daytime
    Management

    I Am Not the Rockstar

    In my previous post, I described Team Leads as bass guitar players.Anyone who is familiar with music knows that rhythm and melody go hand-in-hand. With many genres from funk to hard rock, bass guitars place themselves right in between those two, boosting the overall experience.This also means that, by its nature, that low-pitch bass sound is often buried between drums and guitars: it provides the music with body and groove, but many people struggle with recognising its sound. Bass guitarists are often overlooked, while singers and lead guitarists take all the love and the cheers. Can you see the parallel? I do. You have all worked hard to compose the next…

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