Management and Leadership

Engineering management and leadership is undergoing a revitalization as we move past the factory-oriented management styles and embrace the philosophies and practices that work in creative knowledge work.

Our approach to engineering leadership is bi-modal, guiding you and your team to develop leaders as both individual contributors as well as in more formal management roles.

Apprenticeship Program Design

Are you starting an apprenticeship or internship program? We can help you set your newest reports up for success.

Let's design your apprenticeship program and experience, together.

Porcini Hunting - Find Your Guide

Porcini Hunting - Finding Your Programming Guide is a three-page micro-zine that draws a parallel between hunting for mushrooms and finding technical mentors and teachers.

Download Porcini Hunting today!

Organizations Can't Change, But People Can Change Organizations

What can you do to create change in your organization? Find power in people.

Engineering Managers: It's Time to Write Better Job Descriptions

Part of what makes a poor manager is a lack of investment into the day-to-day activities of management and an over-emphasis on the day-to-day activities of a practitioner. One of these day-to-day management activities is understanding and describing the work that is being done, why it's being done, and how it's being done. Here's how to communicate the this in the form of a good job description.

Designing a Directed Conversational Interview

This article shows how to take interviewing techniques from the field of user research and cognition and meld them into a directed conversation interview, suitable for evaluating candidates against a skill ladder. Learn how to design a directed conversational interview for the early stages of your hiring process.

Introducing "Let's Pair!", A Zine Series on Effective Pair Programming Techniques

While some see “Privilege” as a four letter word, as a leader it's critical to understand how team members' backgrounds impact them. People love or hate pair programming, and for good reason! It's a tough skill!

Evolving process for evolving teams

Like many of you, we hold standups to sync up on what people are up to, surfacing and supporting through blockers, and getting in a little regular facetime. We’re currently on our third variation of the year for how we do our standups. And today we're sharing our recipe for learning if your team process should change, and how to change it.

Interviewer Skills Part 2/??: How to create interview questions

You know what attributes will make someone the right addition to your team, and have specific enough descriptions that there can be no room for ambiguity. How do you translate these into interview questions? This is Part 2 of a multi-part series covering some of the topics introduced in our RailsConf 2018 workshop, "Interviewer Skills".

Interviewer Skills Part 1/??: Why set specific goals

How do you know if someone will be the right addition to your team? What happens if you both agree it's important to hire "no jerks" or people who are "smart and learn fast", but have different ideas about exactly that might mean? This is Part 1 of a multi-part series covering some of the topics introduced in our RailsConf 2018 workshop, "Interviewer Skills".

Return from RailsConf + Interviewer Skills Part 0/??: Intro

You asked us for it in the halls of RailsConf and on Twitter. This article is the first in a multi-part series going over some of the topics introduced in our Interviewer Skills workshop. We have a list of WIP topics. What do you most hope to learn? Let us know.

Twenty minutes

Recently I was chatting with a friend who works as an engineer -- a real engineer, as in buildings and bridges and structures. I was curious what a technical, regulated industry's interview process might look like. What might I learn from her interview practice that could teach me about being a better interviewer in the software industry? Her entire interview process takes twenty minutes. For an industry where shoddy technical work could lead directly to human death. What's the secret?

Tell me about a time when...

When as an interviewer must you ask about specific experiences, and when can you ask what a candidate would do in a hypothetical situation? What can you ask yourself to know the right question to ask?

How to interview your future manager

What you need out of your manager may be different than what your colleagues, your friends, or your peers need -- and that's ok! What can you do to discover if the candidate interviewing to become your manager is the right person for the job?

A primer on setting up your remote employee

Two developers, both alike in dignity. In a fair tech valley, where we lay our scene. know what iambic pentameter is hella hard. How about we jump straight to talking about what to do if you have a lonely remote developer who's not succeeding on your in-office team.

Designing Your Apprenticeship Program for Outcomes

Are you trying to build an apprenticeship program? Building cross-organizational buy-in can bolster your program's success. Learn how to align your apprenticeship program with your organization's desired outcomes.

Understanding, Owning and Leveraging Your Privilege In Tech

While some see “Privilege” as a four letter word, as a leader it's critical to understand how team members' backgrounds impact them. Learn how to own, understand and leverage your privilege.

An Introduction to Software Apprenticeship

Software apprenticeships develop your existing talent and help you expand your teams more quickly and effectively. Learn the basics of designing an apprenticeship program.