I’ve been fascinated for a while about how the issues in writing software overlap with the issues in writing anything. In both cases we take abstract ideas and express them in language. How changing our conception of “developers” from “engineers” to “writers” might help in the challenging business of managing software teams.
“I can’t find the time to think/do strategy/network/develop my team”. Happens all the time, and there is not a lot of “time management” advice which allows for the constant stream of sheer stuff that happens in a tech company.
These are the approaches that work for my clients. Take a look.
This is focussed on Product Management, but is more generally applicable to the tech world at large. Yes, there’s a fire hose. Yes, you have to deal with it. “What’s on fire” is a good enough starting heuristic.
Radical Candor doesn’t always magically lead to peace, harmony, and agreement. It does (ideally) get everybody to share the same reality. If everyone does see reality the same way, but fundamentally disagrees about what to do, it may be time to “Disagree and Commit” - a habit which is deeply ingrained at Amazon. A good introduction - well worth reading.
“The trick is building truth and trust”. “Candor is critical to developing trust. And that involves being clear with everyone on your team about how they are doing and what they need to do to improve”.
The article doesn’t check Radical Candor by name, but drives at the essence of it: when you share the truth, you share trust and the team (company) can move forward.
If you have particular ongoing conversations in which you feel attacked, you might want to check this out. Digs into some questions you can ask yourself about why your guard goes up, and your emotions rise.
“We gain awareness of ourselves and others from setbacks and difficulties; we get used to a world that is not always about us…” Rebecca Solnit
“The biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place” George Bernard Shaw
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