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Thanks to the pandemic, many people are getting their first taste of working remotely. But for Gustavo Niemeyer of Canonical, having a globally distributed team is just a way of life. On this week’s episode of CTO Connection, he discusses the pros, cons, and considerations for companies considering globally distributed teams.Further, Gustavo talks to Peter about managing teams looking to solve big, open-ended problems, why finding motivated employees is key, and why he is a proponent of globally distributed teams. Take a listen for more.(01:12) - Discovering a passion(05:07) - Team leadership at Conectiva(06:18) - Doorway to Canonical(09:16) - Bootstrapping large projects(17:16) - Managing expectations(22:03) - Self-motivation(25:20) - Communication overlap(30:40) - International compensation(35:15) - Remote interviewsSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Sites like Squarespace and Shopify have simplified the design and engineering process for people who either don’t have the technical skills or the resources to hire a team of engineers. However, there is no one-size-fits-all approach for the tools a business will need. Julien Lemoine is the co-founder and CTO of Algolia, a hosted search platform. He joined Peter for a discussion on API and customization.Listen as Julien discusses why things are trending toward customization and greater flexibility. He also shares why getting the architecture right is one of the most important aspects for anyone managing a team of engineers. (01:11) - How Julien got interested in technology(03:15) - Small team management(05:53) - Becoming CTO at MASA Group(07:10) - Simplifying search at Algolia(10:26) - Build and buy(25:37) - Evolution of the problem(33:40) - Choosing the right APISpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
When Justin Dean was placed as a network engineer in the Marine Corps, he had no idea that this would lead to a career helping legacy and emerging businesses shape what is possible in network engineering. Justin is currently the CTO and CIO of Weedmaps, a website that helps customers find local weed dispensaries and helps dispensaries stay in compliance with state regulations.Today, Justin takes us through his jobs at Shopzilla and Ticketmaster before arriving at the industry changing Weedmaps. Listen in as he talks to Peter about both the evolution and future of network engineering.(01:10) - The road to Weedmaps(08:37) - The secret sauce at Shopzilla(15:10) - Transforming Ticketmaster(25:49) - The World Wide Web of Weed(34:30) - Product prioritization(36:10) - Business unit organization(46:52) - Attracting and hiring staffSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Rob De Feo has spoken to more than 500 startups over the last few years in his role as a startup advocate. These experiences have given him insider knowledge on the patterns leaders in startups face as well as best practices that have helped businesses reach scale.This week on CTO Connection, Rob takes Peter behind the curtain of life as a startup advocate. They also discuss their biggest career advice: searching for roles based on tasks rather than titles. Tune in for Rob’s insights.(01:10) - How Rob got into the tech world(01:55) - Joining Expedia(05:37) - Becoming a co-founder and CTO(07:20) - Moving to Amazon Web Services(09:54) - Speaking to start-ups(10:45) - Building for now(20:17) - Lead geek personalities(22:37) - Patterns for early-stage teams(29:57) - Getting good advice(32:50) - Balance in mentorship(35:18) - Becoming a start-up CTO(36:51) - Training, coaching, and mentoringSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
If you’re a startup or any company that doesn’t have vast name recognition, attracting top talent can be a key concern. Ashish Aggarwal cut his teeth at Microsoft, Amazon, and Postmates so when the time came to start his own company, Productiv, he knew how to get the right people for the job.Ashish spoke candidly about his past experiences and how they have helped shape Productiv. He shared with Peter the two things that attract top talent: challenging problems to solve and the opportunity to work with other high performers. Listen for more of his insights.(01:12) - Growing into people management(03:39) - Management training at Microsoft(06:15) - Attracting great talent at Ebay(08:50) - Geo-distributed offices(11:53) - Amazon's customer obsession(18:23) - Next-level ownership at Postmates(24:22) - Founding Productiv(34:30) - Principles for start-up team buildingSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
According to Raj Sethuraman, good technology cannot be a successful technology unless it solves customer problems and drives great business outcomes. Raj is currently CTO at Wolters Kluwer and got his start at Intuit. The common thread throughout his career has been establishing customer-centricity to better inform technical decisions.He is our guest this week on CTO Connection and talked to Peter about a program he likes called “Follow Me Home” in which he and other team members sit down with customers to find out how they use products and what could make them work better. Listen for his insights.(01:21) - Transitioning to leadership(03:48) - Customer centricity(05:16) - Follow me home(12:26) - Co-creating value(16:57) - Badass: Making Users Awesome(18:24) - Achieving quick wins faster(22:01) - Appetite for change(24:51) - Managing pushback (28:01) - Hiring for culture fit(30:30) - Engineer rotation(32:29) - Innovation priorities Special thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating, or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Greg Thomas is the author of the book, Code Your Way Up. Over the course of his 20 years in software development, he found that there was a void when it comes to developing individuals on a team into leadership and management roles.Greg joined Peter to talk about some of the most important principles discussed in his book. He discusses why feedback isn’t always a pat on the back and shares three questions you should be asking when you join or build a new team. Listen for his advice.(01:32) - Code Your Way Up (03:10) - How to grow individuals(06:24) - Identifying the right track(09:51) - Selecting feedback(14:18) - Continuing to code(16:25) - Candidates for career change(22:29) - Training to become a competent manager(25:20) - The Making of a Manager(25:33) - Seth Godin's "altMBA" workshop(26:37) - Succession planning(28:50) - Touchpoints for reflection(31:43) - Helping teams help themselvesSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
In any industry, communication is a key factor in a team’s success. For CTOs navigating complex problems, effective communication between all stakeholders is paramount. David Subar is both a Chief Product Officer and Chief Technology Officer at Interna Consulting. He joined Peter to discuss common patterns that result in communication breakdowns.David shares some of the clashes that can happen when a CEO’s vision is not in alignment with the metrics or working style of the team. He also discusses why having a hybrid position for a CTO and Product Officer eases workflow. Listen for his advice on diffusing these communication issues.(01:25) - David's first jobs out of college(03:27) - Transitioning to management(07:14) - Interna Consulting(09:43) - Common CEO failure patterns(12:13) - Relative strengths of C-level executives(16:26) - Building credibility and communication paths(18:41) - Helping the CEO focus on what matters(25:53) - Patterns in failing CTOs(28:35) - First time at bat(31:45) - Off-handed comments Special thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Fleming Shi has been with Barracuda Networks for more than 15 years. In that time, there has been a profound shift and evolution in the tools and security systems that power his engineering team. He joined Peter for this week’s edition of CTO Connection to discuss his journey to CTO as well as the many changes he’s witnessed over the years.Listen for Fleming’s thoughts on keeping up with trends as well as the character traits of 10xer engineers.(01:27) - Fleming's career journey(04:17) - Moving to Barracuda(08:07) - Sustainability after launch(14:18) - Motivation for the long-term(19:39) - Sustaining a culture of innovation(24:25) - Advanced technology group(29:46) - What makes a 10XerSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Data science has increasingly become an integral part of the technical makeup of organizations. However, most CTOs don’t have experience building a data science component from scratch. Jon Morra got his start in data science at eHarmony when most technical teams did not have any researchers. He joins Peter today on CTO Connection to offer advice on how to build a research team from the ground up.Jon discusses why you want to bring on researchers who are generalists and why it is imperative that you have a clear problem you want to solve before assembling a team. He also explains why you should look at problems as oracles and offers guidance on the hiring process for data scientists. Listen to get ideas on starting a research team for your organization. (01:26) - Jon's path to becoming Chief Data Scientist at ZEFR(02:40) - Balancing competing priorities at eHarmony(04:30) - Where to start building up a data science team(08:16) - Approaches for making the first hire(11:14) - Beyond full stack(13:07) - Filling the gaps(16:18) - Thirsty to learn(17:56) - Promoting to manager(19:41) - Minimizing business risk(22:16) - Defining success(24:11) - Where should the team live within an org?(27:42) - Initial goals and expectations(29:32) - What is senior?(32:16) - Managing senior data scientistsSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
VP of Engineering is an expansive position. But what is it really like on the granular level? Alexandra Paredes is the VP of Engineering at Code Climate and joined Peter to discuss how she approaches the hiring process, keeps her team on track, and navigates metrics such as cycle time and code review involvement.Tune in to hear Alexandra’s thoughts on communication and transparency as well as mentoring new engineers to ensure they ask the right questions from the start. [01:28] - Alexandra's rise to VP of Engineering at Code Climate[07:21] - Internal metrics[12:02] - Milestones without estimates[18:40] - Cycle time[20:29] - Reliability requirements[21:59] - Code review involvement[23:29] - Incremental pull requests[26:34] - Tracking key abilities[29:58] - Communicating metrics to non-technical managementSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Working nonstop without delegating is not a sustainable way to live or work. Such habits often lead to burnout. CTOs in particular struggle with this problem. Many are young, inexperienced, or desirous of being part of a shippable product to relinquish control. Andy Skipper was once such a CTO himself. Now he coaches and mentors other CTOs with his company, CTO Craft.Andy joined Peter for this week’s episode of CTO Connection to discuss what burnout is, how to identify it, and what tools you can use to turn things around. Listen to this important conversation for tips and advice on beating burnout.[01:26] - The early days of Andy's career[06:19] - The vision behind founding CTO Craft[07:56] - Patterns of burnout[11:29] - Heuristics for prevention[15:46] - Walking away from the golden handcuffs[19:36] - Mismatched expectations & resources[20:08] - Communication, helping others, and polyphasic sleeping[25:55] - Couples therapy for founders and lead technologists[28:50] - Cutting losses[30:42] - Finding a sustainable pace[33:54] - Step out of the situationSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
According to James Smith, CEO of Bugsnag, caring about customer experience is what makes for a better software developer. This is especially important when managing technical debt. Today on CTO Connection, James shares his experience and discusses his approach toward technical debt from both the developer and client perspectives.James shares why he believes overcommunication is key and how carving out time can help your team achieve a manageable sprint cadence. Listen for more.[01:26] - Becoming CTO in hard mode[05:43] - Learning to let go[10:17] - Hiring management[13:11] - Process maturation[15:34] - Overcommunication[19:12] - Managing technical debt[26:08] - Carving out time[31:23] - Bug triage[37:23] - Delivering a good experienceSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Let’s say you join a new organization. How would you spend your first hundred days if you were to figure out how to enact change and implement your own priorities? Our guest this week on CTO Connection is Andrew Fawcett, CTO of Avantica. Andrew has worked with companies of all sizes and has seen some truly amazing changes made, but also has run into those that lacked vision.Andrew sat down with Peter to discuss some of the reasons why companies have such a hard time with change as well as best practices for setting up a culture that embraces change. He explains why he is a big believer in winning over the hearts and minds of employees. Check out the episode for more.[01:28] - Managing change in an organization[06:08] - Influencing cultural change[07:47] - Dealing with multiple platforms[13:02] - Three factors that inform how we view change[18:07] - Identifying a unifying vision[22:09] - Rolling out a large cultural change[25:17] - Running technology at a new organization[28:15] - Broadening the power base[30:21] - The other side of changeSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
We all want our companies to succeed so it’s easy to get fixated on numbers that we believe will help us judge our efforts. However, according to Dalia Havens of Netlify, metrics need to be optimized to give you a full picture of company or project health.Today, Dalia talks to Peter about using metrics in a healthy way that can empower and help solve problems. She also discusses why a consistent delivery pattern will give you the most insight into your operation. Listen to her thoughts. [01:26] - How Dalia ended up at IBM[04:03] - Engineering management at SailPoint Technologies[06:39] - Moving into the director role[07:54] - Engineering metrics[12:46] - Looking for a more consistent delivery pattern[14:50] - Understanding cycle time[18:37] - Defining the smallest unit of work[20:41] - Incentivizing teams[23:20] - Gauging quality[24:53] - Layering categorization on top of throughput[27:18] - Breaking down pull requests[28:40] - Educating business stakeholders[30:36] - Having foundational metrics in placeSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
When we think of startups we think of charismatic entrepreneurs plugging away on their passions. But what does it really take to form a startup? Our guest this week on CTO Connection is Bob Friday, CTO of Mist, a Juniper Company.Bob is a veteran who has been through the startup process many times. He talked to Peter about the thought processes that go into crafting both teams and entire organizations. Bob also talks about the formula behind the process new ventures will go through and which positions are the most important to fill. Listen in for his strategy tips.[01:28] - The beginnings of Bob's technology career[04:16] - The ultimate team sport[05:30] - The blank sheet of paper[07:52] - CEO checkbox[09:00] - Market timing[10:20] - Bob's first big company adventure[16:05] - Mist Systems[20:10] - Returning to the startup world[21:43] - Taking on the incumbents[26:13] - Jumping off the cliff[28:40] - Getting the team together[30:47] - Going all-in on an enterprise AI play[33:57] - Creating an environment where data scientists enjoy beingSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
When companies transition from private to IPO, there are bound to be challenges and learning curves. Rachana Kumar has worked in five countries, two of her positions were in the non-profit sector. These experiences helped her roll with the punches as her current employer, Etsy, has undergone a massive change over the last few years.Rachana is preparing for a talk on helping leaders navigate large organizational changes. In this week’s episode, she explains to Peter the three foundational tools that can help any leader work through changes and challenges.[01:34] - Rachana's transition to management[03:47] - Co-founding Shaadi Karma[06:37] - Changes at Etsy[11:57] - Leading through rapid change and transformation in tech[13:09] - Compliance in a public company[22:27] - Feature flagging[24:38] - Three tools to lead teams through external changes[25:38] - Focus & resiliency[30:43] - Communication & transparency[35:09] - Managing up & downSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating, or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Learning doesn’t end once you’ve earned your degree. Developers and engineers must stay up to date with their skills and emerging technologies. But most of the time, employees are expected to take on this additional learning on their own.Our guest this week on CTO Connection is Kwame Thomison, a consultant and leadership coach formerly of Meebo, Facebook, and Asana. Kwame discusses different learning models that can be integrated into workplaces to create a strong culture of learning and collaboration. He talks to Peter about the difference between high learners and light learners, and a framework for value creation.[01:27] - Becoming a force multiplier[05:11] - Differences in culture & experience[08:13] - Facebook in the early days[10:00] - Finding balance at Asana[11:54] - The rewarding demands of consulting[13:40] - Heavy vs. light learners[15:01] - Communities of practice[22:04] - Learning guilds[25:40] - Project guilds[28:18] - Tips for growing a learning cultureSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
When COVID-19 hit, UserTesting was already at a unique advantage: the team was already mostly working remotely. However, as the stay at home orders have increased, UserTesting’s CTO Kaj van de Loo has seen some unforeseen issues pop up.This week on CTO Connection, we’re discussing how the pandemic has not only changed the structure of work, but also the expectations people have of working in an office. Kaj discusses why everything (no matter how small) must be documented, why managers need to proactively talk to employees to see if there are any mental health issues coming up with the changed working environments, and the considerations that will need to be made to safely reopen. [01:26] - Kaj's management journey[03:23] - Increased specialization[04:56] - Programming in a pandemic[08:18] - Dealing with different time zones[12:35] - Introvert empowerment[15:59] - Flexibility for individuals[21:30] - Managing remote and distributed teams[25:34] - Improved metrics[28:39] - Online social activities[32:17] - Back into the officeSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Kunal Anand has an interesting background for a CTO. Despite majoring in business, Kunal got his start at JPL (an offshoot of NASA). From there he worked at Myspace and the BBC. His experiences at each of these companies taught him invaluable lessons that led to him founding his own company which was acquired by Imperva where he currently serves as CTO.Peter talked to Kunal about his diverse resume and then pivoted to an insightful conversation on the future of work. Kunal offers invaluable tips on how he is currently setting the tone for his employees by scheduling in mental health breaks and prioritizing flexibility. Check out the episode to get a clearer picture on what work will look like in the next ten years.[01:30] - Kunal's journey to NASA[05:21] - Unique workloads at MySpace[11:29] - The front row experience at Gravity[12:55] - Building microservices at BBC Worldwide[20:10] - ColdFusion[26:25] - Founding Prevoty[30:13] - The future of work[42:38] - "The Friendship That Made Google Huge"Special thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Hypergrowth is what every startup dreams of, but actually filling the seemingly unlimited positions available is incredibly taxing on employees. Cat Miller is the Vice President at Flatiron Health. At one point, she took on the enormous burden of interviewing at least four people a week. Recognizing the strain on resources, she and her team set out to streamline their hiring process.Today, Cat is sharing what she’s learned from her year of panic in which she hired 100 engineers, as well as how Flatiron is structuring their current hiring process. She also discusses the training each interviewer must undergo before their first interview. Listen in for her hiring insights.[01:25] - Cat's early career[05:11] - Managing humans at Flatiron Health[08:25] - Product and platform team alignment[13:57] - Scaling hiring during hypergrowth[22:29] - The one-fourth rule[23:39] - Helping engineers become good interviewers[24:46] - Question maestros[26:27] - Hiring to match values and culture[28:41] - Rubric for humility[29:51] - Compensation strategySpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating, or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Now that everyone is working remotely, people are starting to realize how much they took meetings for granted. Our guest this week on CTO Connection is Douglas Ferguson, President of Voltage Control. Voltage Control’s mission is to rid the world of horrible meetings. So how do you transform ineffectual meetings to something of greater value?Douglas talked to Peter about his 10 mantras for meetings that work. Some include ideas like ‘no purpose, no meeting’ and ‘embrace the child’s mind’. Tune in to learn how to make meetings work for your team.[01:34] - Ridding the world of horrible meetings[04:29] - Durable decisions[08:59] - The 10 meeting mantras[09:09] - No purpose, no meeting[10:18] - Disagree and commit[17:58] - Bring your best self[23:08] - Do the work in the meeting[26:59] - Foster emotional safety[28:09] - Capture room intelligence[30:32] - Embrace the child's mind[35:45] - Respect everyone's time[36:46] - Decide what not to do[38:08] - Debrief for durability[39:42] - Meeting about meetingsSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating, or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Tolga Tarhan got his start single-handedly running all the technology in his high school. Fast forward to today in which his experience during the dot com bust and incremental steps at various development firms have led him to the belief that the cloud is the ultimate goal of any organization.On today’s episode of CTO Connection, Tolga shares wisdom and advice on how to find the right mechanisms for your business so you can gradually shift to a cloud native architecture. For Tolga, the key is not “lift and shift,” but making a gradual shift that will enable your company to innovate quickly.[01:26] - How Tolga became a technologist and engineering leader[04:01] - Specializing in AWS at Rackspace[05:55] - Getting started adopting the cloud[09:39] - Dealing with problems of scale[11:11] - Bringing professional software development to the serverless world[13:28] - Experimenting with Serverless Framework[20:45] - What are microservices?[22:41] - When to consider more than one service[26:58] - Talking to clients about resilience[28:34] - Observability requirements[29:40] - Becoming cloud nativeSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
There are few jobs where you’re encouraged to break things, but Kolton Andrus has made a career out of “failure as a service.” Kolton is the CEO and Co-founder of Gremlin, a platform that seeks to help companies avoid outages and build more resilient systems.On today’s episode of CTO Connection, Kolton explains the concept of chaos engineering and why it’s so important, particularly to large scale operations. Take a listen and get ideas on how you can prevent outages.[01:26] - Kolton's backstory[03:21] - Managing a team at Amazon[05:10] - Moving to a technical role at Netflix[07:51] - Founding Gremlin[10:36] - Formative experiences with chaos engineering[15:39] - Graceful degradation[19:33] - Next-level testing[22:26] - Challenges with microservices[26:05] - Efficiency & resilience[31:18] - Preventing outagesSpecial thanks to our global partner – Amazon Web Services(AWS). AWS offers a broad set of global cloud-based products to equip technology leaders to build better and more powerful solutions, reach out to aws-cto-program@amazon.com if you’re interested to learn more about their offerings.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
Over the last few weeks, many companies have switched to remote work. But for companies that are hiring and candidates that are looking for new opportunities, what are the best practices for remote interviews? Joining Peter today on CTO Connection is Shannon Hogue, Global Head of Solutions Engineering at Karat.Karat has perfected the art of Interview Engineering and Shannon has some helpful advice on the three aspects that comprise a successful remote interview: defined competencies, reviews of interviewers, and consistently measuring performance. Whether you’re a hiring company or a candidate, this episode will get you prepped for your next remote interview.[01:27] - How to interview effectively without the office[03:03] - Defining competencies[06:55] - Measuring performance consistently[08:53] - Coding challenges[10:43] - Unbalanced questions[12:25] - Reviewing and training interviewers[16:30] - Consistently measuring performance[18:15] - Replacing the whiteboard[19:08] - Video conferencing[20:47] - Systems for cheating detection[22:18] - Traits of good interview engineers[24:05] - Testing for interpersonal skills[25:02] - Best practices for remote job candidatesIf you’re looking for more remote interviewing resources, be sure to check out this guide from Karat -- Going virtual: How to interview and hire in a remote world or visit their website www.karat.com.CTO Connection is where you can learn from the experiences of successful engineering leaders at fast-growth tech startups. Whether you want to learn more about hiring, motivating or managing an engineering team, if you're technical and manage engineers, the CTO Connection podcast is a great resource for learning from your peers!If you'd like to receive new episodes as they're published, please subscribe to CTO Connection in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts. It really helps others find the show.Podcast episode production by Dante32.
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Podcast Details

Created by
CTO Connection
Podcast Status
Active
Started
Apr 15th, 2016
Latest Episode
Sep 24th, 2020
Release Period
Weekly
Episodes
128
Avg. Episode Length
34 minutes
Explicit
No
Order
Episodic
Language
English

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