Cover art for podcast Storytime With Managers

“Storytime With Managers” are the questions you would ask an expert over a cup of coffee (including the ones you feel scared to ask), packaged up into 20min podcast episodes.

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Got a topic you wish we would cover? a person you wish we would interview (like yourself)? Let us know!

Season 4

Discovering Managing with Ashish Dixit

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The last episode of Season 4 is a hero’s journey story! Ashish Dixit (@tundal45 on Twitter) shares how he found himself managing a team of volunteers (and realized this was happening through failure), how he approached this experience, and what he learned through an accidental discovery of “oops I’m managing?”. Whether your first management days are fresh or far in the past, I hope you enjoy this humble and charming storytime.

Episode Transcript

Ask And Offer Culture with KWu

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Ever heard these sentiments in your workplace?

  • “That was so unprofessional!”
  • “Why are they being so rude? They’re always so pushy.”
  • “Don’t they care about..?”
  • “Why won’t they just tell me if they can’t meet that deadline?”
  • “I’m so overwhelmed but everyone just keeps piling on more work.”

Different default assumptions around communications can lead to painful miscommunications and hurt feelings. “Ask and Offer Culture” (or as Ask-ers like to call it, “Guess culture”) is one way to describe these differences. KWu (@kwugirl on Twitter) is a regular speaker on the topic, and shares her extensive knowledge in Episode 28.

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Episode Transcript

Technical Leading with Edwin Mak

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How do you give technical feedback and direction without inflicting unwanted help? or change direction without introducing bad feelings?

In Episode 27, Edwin Mak (@edwinthinks on Twitter) shares how to be an effective tech lead. We talk about how to ask the right questions from the right mindset to elicit questions, what to listen for in your conversations, how to recover from failure, and more.

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Episode Transcript

Unexpected Onboarding with Ale Paredes

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In Episode 26, Ale Paredes (@ale7714 on Twitter / ale7714 on LinkedIn / Latinas In Tech NYC) shares her team’s experience as they find themselves not just unexpectedly remote during a pandemic, but also unexpectedly onboarding while unexpectedly remote during a pandemic.

We talk about the role of documentation, 1-1s, and social touches in onboarding and team management.

Episode Transcript

Communicating Ideas with Sergio Rabiela

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How do you communicate high-level or complex ideas to your team?

How do you know if your ideas are getting across?

When is repeating yourself too repetitive?

In Episode 25, Sergio Rabiela (@spacechurro on Twitter) shares advice on communicating high-level ideas to your team.

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Episode Transcript

Burnout with Aneika and Anjuan Simmons

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What is burnout? What does it look like in an individual, versus a team? What can you do to counter burnout?

What do you do if your new team is already suffering from burnout, before you’ve had a chance to build relationships with anyone?

In Episode 24, Professor Aneika Simmons (@aneika on Twitter) and engineering manager Anjuan Simmons (@anjuan on Twitter) talk about burnout from two different perspectives: academic research and hands-on management.

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Episode Transcript

Startup Hiring with Jennifer Kim

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How do you win candidates when bigger companies can offer more money? What changes can you make to your interviews to get your candidates excited about your company? In Episode 23, Jennifer Kim (@jenistyping on Twitter) shares her expertise around hiring, and we dive into what’s different about startup hiring.

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Episode Transcript

Going Remote with Damien Burke

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In Episode 22, Damien Burke ( shares his experience taking a team from fully in-office to fully remote.

Episode Transcript

Ally and Manager with Cris Concepcion

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What does it mean to be an ally? what does it have to do with managing up? and how do you recover when you make a mistake as an ally? Episode 21 is the first of Season 4, and Cris Concepcion (crisconcepcion on LinkedIn) shares how managers can be better managers by being allies to their team.

Side note: earlier this week, I discovered a secret bag of peanut butter pretzels in my pantry! it was the perfectly placed snack of the moment, a surprise gift from past-me to quarantine-me. Episode 21 had a similar journey: it was recorded in Summer 2019, and released in Spring 2020. I’m very grateful to Cris for being so understanding and gracious about the gap between recording and release!

Episode Transcript

About the podcast

Storytime With Managers is hosted by Jennifer Tu of Cohere.

Our theme music is by Kevin MacLeod (CC-BY)

Editing is by Mandy Moore and the DevReps crew!

Editing for Seasons 1 and 2 was by Bryant from Zinc - thank you, we couldn't have started this without you!

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