Hugh Williams probably isn't a name that pops to the front of mind when talking Australia's greatest technology exports - but it should. His career leading huge teams on cutting edge projects at global tech giants Google, Microsoft and eBay have fundamentally changed the way we live our lives. Globally, few possess the depth of domain expertise as Hugh.
This episode dives into 'what great looks like' when it comes to individual engineers, small product teams and larger organisations, and his insights into hiring and fostering high performance teams and innovation, and describing how the best tech companies are built and scaled, are articulated simply and actionable for leaders of all teams.
We also discuss Hugh’s most recent passion project as the co-founder of CS in Schools, which is empowering the next generation of DigiTech professionals.
Growing up at the frontier of technology and working alongside some of the greatest minds of the era, Hugh’s experiences transcend his industry and will provide key lessons for all listeners, of all interests.
Hugh’s upbringing and introduction to computer science (4:00)
Initial career steps manoeuvring through a technology boom and the rise of search technology (6:20)
Lessons from working in Silicon Valley (11:28)
Current labour climate shifting the power back to the employer (14:10)
What makes a great engineer? (18:05)
How to foster the best performance and innovation within teams of all sizes? (21:45)
The two-pizza team (the optimal structure of a technology team) (27:34)
How do the engineers integrate with the wider organisation? (31:09)
Minimizing the number of company goals to unify and improve business functionality (34:09)
Key lessons as a leader to build a sustainable and scalable company culture (38:40)
CS in Schools mission and the key steps for Australia to be a driving force of technology progression (41:20)
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