CloudBees announced the integration of CloudBees’ continuous delivery and release orchestration solution, CloudBees CD/RO, with Argo Rollouts.
I moved on to Medium as an individual contributor. I valued teamwork and leadership from all angles, but didn't have any official management experience. In fact, I wasn't particularly excited by the prospect of being a manager, always feeling more comfortable leading from behind than in front.
While I bristled at "manager culture" — with its command and control origins — I also felt that the "no manager" movement had created a toxic void that left employees feeling unsupported or jockeying for power. So, when the day came that I was asked to step up and take lead of the engineering team, I decided to pursue a different path, that of the servant leader.
Luckily Medium was well primed for this approach, with both Ev and Biz, who had seen hyper-growth at Blogger, Google, and Twitter — actively wanting to do things differently this time around.
I saw my role as an organizational problem solver; instead of telling individuals or teams what to do, I worked to put in place support structures for junior engineers, identified owners for infrastructure, refined our hiring process, and generally worked to clarify roles and responsibilities. The goal was to empower individuals and set teams up to work in ways that fit them best, while also streamlining processes to reduce stress and confusion.
As we grew the team and evolved our processes, I questioned the status quo and evaluated processes from first principles. Here are some of the things I learned along the way.
Build a 10x Team, Not 10x Individuals
Team performance is about so much more than just the sum of the individuals involved.
A high-performing team can truly be 10x, overachieving and reaching goals ahead of deadlines. At the same time, a team of disconnected but exceptional individuals can perform terribly, if the conditions for collaboration are not there. It's imperative that managers create a collaborative environment, or every team member — especially in this remote world — will feel like an island.
Rethink Performance Reviews
Traditional performance review processes do not do a good job of serving individuals' needs. They tend to be backward-looking performance assessment, as opposed to forward-looking feedback — feedforward — that re-establishes expectations for the future and lays out a path for how individuals can progress, both in terms of the work they do and how they fit into the team.
Furthermore, coupling feedback with assessment muddies the water — who is the audience? The manager or the individual? I found that decoupling career feedback from performance assessment provides a more meaningful experience for individuals which actually helps them grow much faster.
Establish Rituals and Routines
Humans are ritualistic creatures. Building a drumbeat or rhythm into your work processes makes everything easier. With a good cadence, everyone on the team knows what's happening and when. In chaotic environments, teams become disjointed and find it hard to settle into deep flow states where the work seems to flow effortlessly. Also, not knowing what's coming day to day adds a layer of anxiety and stress as team members prepare for the unknown.
Constantly Observe, Diagnose, and Evolve
Keeping dev teams effective is a constant process of observing and diagnosing. Structure and practices will never be stable for long, so you need to build and exercise a muscle for change. Reorganizations are traumatic and disruptive, so aim for continuous evolution instead of "ripping the band-aid off" every so often, which will waste time as teams settle back in and adjust to new work parameters.
Always Remind Team Members About the Big Picture
People need to be constantly reminded of the vision and how their work fits into the big picture. If not, even the simplest tasks can feel pointless. Even if you feel like you are repeating yourself and becoming boring, it's important to constantly work to keep everyone aligned and focused on the North Star. Without that guide, everyone builds their own rowboat versus constructing a stable ship.
amazee.io, a Mirantis company, announced that its fully-managed application delivery platform is available in AWS Marketplace.
env0 secured an additional $18.1 million of funding to conclude its Series A investment round with a total of $35.1 million.
Planview announced a new strategic collaboration with UiPath. The integration is designed to fuse the UiPath Business Automation Platform with the Planview Value Stream Management (VSM) solution Planview® Tasktop Hub.
Noname Security announced major enhancements to its API security platform to help organizations protect their API ecosystem, secure their applications, and increase cyber resilience.
Mirantis announced the latest version of Mirantis Container Cloud -- MCC 2.23 -- that simplifies operations with the ability to monitor applications performance with a new Grafana dashboard and to make updates to Kubernetes clusters with a one-click “upgrade” button from a web interface.
Pegasystems announced updates to Pega Cloud supported by an enhanced Global Operations Center to deliver a more scalable, reliable, and secure foundation for its suite of AI-powered decisioning and workflow automation solutions.
D2iQ announced the launch of DKP Gov, a new container-management solution optimized for deployment within the government sector.
StackHawk announced the availability of StackHawk Pro and StackHawk Enterprise for trial and purchase through the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Marketplace.
Octopus Deploy announced the results KinderSystems has seen working with Octopus. Through the use of Octopus, KinderSystems automates its software deployment processes to meet the complex needs of its customers and reduce the time to deploy software.
Elastic Path announced Integrations Hub, a library of instant-on, no-code integrations that are fully managed and hosted by Elastic Path.
Yugabyte announced key updates to YugabyteDB Managed, including the launch of the YugabyteDB Managed Command Line Interface (CLI).
Ambassador Labs released Telepresence for Docker, designed to make it easy for developer teams to build, test and deliver apps at scale across Kubernetes.
Fermyon Technologies introduced Spin 1.0, a major new release of the serverless functions framework based on WebAssembly.
Torc announced the acquisition of coding performance measurement application Codealike to empower software developers with even more data that increases skills, job opportunities and enterprise value.