So, like many other trendy managers nowadays, I also decided to go ahead and write my README doc…
Welcome to me 🙂
What is this?
This is a document to tell you the reader about me – the writer.
Just to make it clear, this document should/will not replace a conversation, it’s just a way for you to better understand who I am, what I do and even why I behave the way I do.
Oh yeah, and also, for myself to map who I am 🙂
What do I do?
Support, invest in and develop the team with clear expectations via practices such as 1:1s, goal setting, and constant feedback. Create growth opportunities for team members and address gaps via non-technical skills mentoring/technical skill mentoring with the help of the Tech-Lead and performance management. help people reach their full potential! Create a high performing and positive work environment based on open communication, agile principles, accountability, and trust. Instill a spirit of continuous improvement in the team’s code, architecture, and processes Connect with other teams to unblock dependencies, provide visibility and transparency to team progress on product initiatives Support the Product Manager and Tech Lead in project planning and continuous process improvement for an optimal flow of value Build a team culture that is collaborative, inclusive, and respectful, but that also drives to deliver. Work closely with the team and the recruiting team to hire high potential engineers from diverse backgrounds
What do I do? (Update 2019)
- Create and implement best practice engineering vision, strategy, policies, processes, and procedures to aid and improve performance across teams
- Work with the Engineering Management team, Senior engineering members, Tech-Leads and Software Architect to spot the weak points in our systems that we would like to move away from, to be able to scale and reduce costs for development
- Ensure that engineering strategies and processes are in place to meet objectives and operational needs regarding cost, quality, and delivery targets and which enables us to function effectively.
- Evaluate alongside the Engineering Managers and the Software Architect the technical challenges we are faced in on the near to far future and take action to mitigate risks and develop opportunities
- Partner with Head of the Department and Head of Product to translate product and engineering vision, strategy, and priorities to clear and actionable roadmap, objectives, and key results and frequently communicate out to the engineering team
- Work closely with the Head of the Department to communicate the priorities of the engineering team to Wikimedia Deutschland’s leadership, defining objectives and key results, and ensuring alignment across Wikimedia Deutschland
- Through mentorship and management, build strong engineering leadership that’s empowered to make technical and management decisions
- Be an engaged part of Wikimedia Deutschland leadership team setting strategy and results, and owning the engineering budget
TLDR; If you need/want to talk, I’m here for you. There are many things I do, none of them is more important than to listen to you and help you.
Don’t wait for our 1:1, 1:1s are good to have don’t get me wrong, but if you have a pressing issue just come to me and we’ll find the time.
Also, my calendar is a bit crazy, I know, if you can’t schedule something with me, let me know and I’ll move things around to fit you.
You care about what we do here. So when you suggest something I know you do so because you care and I take it into account, I never doubt that! Sometimes things just can’t happen, I will do my best to give context and reasoning… please insist and challenge me if you feel I’m wrong.
Team’s opinions / decisions > mine. (most of the times). I am just one person, if you and the team feel something should be done differently – in 99% of the time you will have my blessing to pursue it, it doesn’t mean that I won’t ask a lot of questions and even check what you are talking about, but it’s more to vet your ideas than anything else. Only on rare occasions, I will override them.
You’re very good at your job. And I can’t do your job… I trust that you know what you are talking about, if I am asking questions it’s because I either am: a) Trying to gather context. b) Playing devil’s advocate to understand how convinced you are about what you say. C) Trying to be a sounding board and rubber duck.
You will come and talk to me if something is wrong. I try to keep up and I will do what I can to see if all is good, but generally, I am a flawed human and sometimes I don’t notice things, if anything is bothering you, let me know… otherwise, I might not notice.
What I value
Honesty. If something is wrong let me know, if you have an idea to improve and it contradicts something I say – I have a minimal amount of ego (I think), I can live with it… talk to me, don’t be afraid to tell me what you think – I always prefer to know what’s up over realizing it after the fact.
Empathy. Because honesty without empathy could be destructive to the fabric of a team I will be very honest with you but always empathetic.
Self-reflection. Self-reflection is an important part of growth. You’ll miss opportunities without it.
Team Work. A team can achieve more than one individual can as long as they work together they could scale and do great things.
Good Spirit. It’s always good to hear laughter and happiness in our surroundings
One on Ones
The best 1:1s I’ve had have focused beyond the moment: Your career development, team strategy, and opportunity etc.
I’ll share a 1:1 document with you, feel free to park things you want to bring out in our 1:1s there and I will do the same so we won’t forget…
Generally, we will start with 30 minutes once a week, but we can adjust, it could vary from outside at a cafe/lunch, walk in the park, meeting room.
Duration could vary as well, I’ll try and tailor-make it to our needs.
So you might have heard that I really like retros, I do them on myself each month, try to ask myself what I do well and how to improve (and then I try small things to improve).
My teams are doing the same thing and I would love that you would take an active role in that, small incremental changes will drive us forward and help us improve.
If you want to read more about retros:
The “I’m not perfect slide” 🙂
I’m not good with on the spot solutions. That means that you might have a brilliant idea, but I won’t recognize it on the spot and still have to think about it for a day or two and only then understand how great it really is… and for my side, I will usually avoid finding on the spot solutions – they just don’t work for me.
My time management is lacking (to say the least). My schedule is terrible (as I mentioned before) and I have to learn to manage it better.
I wear my emotions on my sleeve. When I’m upset/angry it usually shows… I’ll try my best to change that as my mood should not affect your work.
I could be a bit stubborn. If you feel I’m wrong and I’m insisting, just go at me again, remind me that I’m stubborn, I forget it sometimes.
I discovered recently that I have Aphantasia – Read about it here
Things I might babble about (not work related)
My son and spouse. I will most likely babble about them a lot, like A LOT.
Feminism. We work in a male dominant industry, an industry that has all to gain and nothing to lose by including women, so why aren’t they in it?
Pop culture. TV shows (mostly The Office US). Because The Office is my favorite, a close 2nd would be Star Trek Next Gen (i’ll reference those 2 like a million times a day, sorry about that, feel free to roll your eyes at me when I do it).
And those dumb Marvel movies, I just love them what can I say…
Triathlons. I used to be a competitive swimmer, now I am trying to get back into shape, but generally, I finished a lot of triathlons and even 3 full distance Ironman tris.
Puns. Well… I will make a lot of puns, lots and lots, out of those lots, hearing a good one is like winning the… lottery (wak wak) feel free to roll your eyes at me as well, beware, I see the eye rolling as a positive reinforcement to continue.
Diving. I am a divemaster and I try to scuba dive at least 2-3 times a year, I also plan to tattoo on me a log book of cool things I’ve seen underwater. (currently, I have made 0 tattoos of that nature (wak wak) )