26 episodios

We share the most critical perspectives, habits & examples of great software engineering leaders to help evolve leadership in the tech industry.

Join our community of software engineering leaders @ www.sfelc.com!

The Engineering Leadership Podcast ELC

    • Administración

We share the most critical perspectives, habits & examples of great software engineering leaders to help evolve leadership in the tech industry.

Join our community of software engineering leaders @ www.sfelc.com!

    Give Up Control and Expand Your Impact with Maria Latushkin CTO @ Omada Health #26

    Give Up Control and Expand Your Impact with Maria Latushkin CTO @ Omada Health #26

    “Giving up control” is about empowering other people to scale yourself, and scale your effectiveness. Maria Latushkin shares with us why you need to give up control as an engineering leader and what holds people back. Plus you’ll learn tons of different ways to influence and manage your performance when it’s dependent on other people’s effectiveness.

    “You are responsible for the delivery of the team. At the end of the day, nobody really cares like how much YOU work. You can be working around the clock. And it's not how great you are or what you produce. It stops being about you and it starts being about the function that you lead.” - Maria Latushkin

    Maria is responsible for leading Omada Health’s technology vision and team. Prior to joining Omada Health and moving to the healthcare space, Maria has spent over 15 years in eCommerce, retail, and enterprise SaaS companies ranging from series B startups to large companies, such as Walmart.

    SHOWNOTES


    Why you need to give up control as a senior engineering leader (2:07)
    What holds people back from giving up control? (9:27)
    The impact and trade-offs you make when you avoid or resist giving up control (15:31)
    How to influence and manage your performance now that it’s dependent on your team’s effectiveness (23:49)
    How to make sure people heard you, so that you know you’re on the same page (29:04)
    Does the discomfort of “giving up control” happen at every transition to a new leadership level, or is it a one-time thing? (32:44)
    How to regain “control” and empower your team (39:40)
    The Impact -  how you feel when you give up control (41:25)
    Takeaways (43:36)

    This episode is brought to you by our friends at Lohika. Lohika helps high-growth tech startups engineer the next Big Thing. Lohika’s distributed engineering teams work with the most demanding technology clients in the world, including Okta, Twilio, and Airbnb, to help VPEs and CTOs accelerate their time to market.

    Learn more at Lohika.com - https://hubs.la/H0wjqfz0

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    Join our community of software engineering leaders @ https://sfelc.com/


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    • 48 min
    Growing Into a VPE - Patterns & Anti-Patterns ft. Cathy Polinsky, Jerry Krikheli, Richard Wong, Erica Lockheimer & Claire Lew #25

    Growing Into a VPE - Patterns & Anti-Patterns ft. Cathy Polinsky, Jerry Krikheli, Richard Wong, Erica Lockheimer & Claire Lew #25

    A dynamic conversation between 4 current and past VPs of Engineering who cover tons of patterns and anti-patterns about being a VPE! You'll hear how leadership is different in large vs. small companies, mental models to determine your greatest leverage, why you DON’T need to act like an owner, how to put trust into practice when you’re transitioning into a new role, and about the imperfect path to become a VPE. 

    SPEAKERS:

    CATHY POLINKSY CTO @ Stitch Fix

    JERRY KRIKHELI VP of Engineering @ Houzz

    RICHARD WONG SVP of Engineering @ Coursera

    ERICA LOCKHEIMER  VP of Engineering @ Linkedin Learning

    And CLAIRE LEW CEO @ Know Your Team

    SHOWNOTES


    What Cathy means by “the best leaders spot patterns, understand problems, then build systems to solve them” (3:55)
    Jerry’s view on how the practice of leadership is different at large companies vs. small companies (7:30)
    Erica’s perspective on how the transition to VPE is different than other eng leadership roles and how to put trust into practice (12:27)
    Why Richard resonates with “act like an owner” and what it actually looks like in practice as VPE (16:40)
    Cathy’s top 3 priorities as VPE that determine how she spends her time and how to refocus your team (23:50)
    Richard's mental model to determine where he has the most leverage for impact and why being technical isn't always about writing code (26:16)
    Jerry's 3 key hiring traits and how to create an environment where you're the first to know when something's wrong (30:10)
    The imperfect path to become a VPE and Erica’s advice for engineering leaders with an “unconventional” background (34:01)
    The common struggle to balance being a problem solver and being the bottleneck as a VPE (39:11)
    How they cope with and manage stress (42:55)
    Takeaways (45:00)

    ELC SUMMIT 2020

    Accelerate your growth as an engineering leader at the ELC Summit! Learn from 100+ incredible speakers. Talks cover tons of well-rounded curated topics. There will be opportunities for hands-on practice through workshops (+ other programs),  and speed networking with other eng leaders through our own custom-built platform!

    More details and tickets @ http://elcsummit.com

    Join our community of software engineering leaders @ https://sfelc.com/


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    • 49 min
    *Bonus* Optimizing Productivity for Remote Engineering Teams with Doug Gaff, VPE @ Zapier & Emma Tang, EM @ Stripe #24

    *Bonus* Optimizing Productivity for Remote Engineering Teams with Doug Gaff, VPE @ Zapier & Emma Tang, EM @ Stripe #24

    We were overwhelmed by questions from our event with Doug and Emma! This is a bonus follow up conversation that further digs into measuring productivity through “Waterlining” and Kaplan Meier estimating, hashtags in communication, remote 1:1 best practices, and Doug shows us some of the creative ways he applies Zapier integrations for his personal productivity!

    "What it does is it forces a debate as to A what's most important and B do we really want that thing below the line waterline? Because what happens sometimes is people are super excited about this thing. And then when you see this rank list of stuff, you're like, Oh, but wait a second. There's like running the business stuff below the water line. We actually have to get that up and staff that..." - Doug Gaff

    DOUG GAFF - VP of Engineering @ Zapier

    Doug is the VP of Engineering at Zapier, the software solution that helps your other software work together more effectively. As the leader of an organization with over 100 engineers, he has learned a lot about effective management and leadership. Doug currently resides in the Greater Boston Area.

    EMMA TANG - Engineering Manager @ Stripe

    Emma is an Engineering Manager in Data Infrastructure at Stripe based in San Francisco. Her team focuses on building distributed computation infrastructure to support Stripe's business. At Stripe, we believe in investing in our remote culture, and have built out the remote engineering hub, and tripled the number of remote engineers in the last year.

    SHOWNOTES


    How to Measure Productivity - Waterlining and Kaplan Meier (2:44)
    Waterlining as a tool to discuss priorities (9:10)
    Using hashtags to understand intent and to increase the bandwidth of communication (11:02)
    Best practices for remote 1:1’s when you don’t see the productivity levels you want (17:37)
    Tips for onboarding new grads (23:03)
    Doug’s remote work routine and lifestyle (24:47)
    Doug’s favorite Zapier integrations to increase productivity (29:21)
    Takeaways (33:45)

    ELC SUMMIT 2020

    Accelerate your growth as an engineering leader at the ELC Summit! Learn from 100+ incredible speakers. Talks cover tons of well-rounded curated topics. There will be opportunities for hands-on practice through workshops (+ other programs),  and speed networking with other eng leaders through our own custom-built platform!

    More details and tickets @ http://elcsummit.com

    Join our community of software engineering leaders @ https://sfelc.com/


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    • 36 min
    Optimizing Productivity for Remote Engineering Teams with Doug Gaff, VPE @ Zapier & Emma Tang, EM @ Stripe #23

    Optimizing Productivity for Remote Engineering Teams with Doug Gaff, VPE @ Zapier & Emma Tang, EM @ Stripe #23

    Doug Gaff and Emma Tang discuss high-bandwidth communication, innovation accounting, preventing developer burnout, influencing teams, and communicating priorities. They’ll help you move from frustration and survival in remote work, back to optimized productivity!

    “Personal stuff is totally in bounds and people just listen. And they don't try to solve a problem for you. And I might be like, I'm red today. I didn't get any sleep. I'm stressed about this thing. I'm not sure I'm going to get it done or this thing's happening personally. I'm worried about a friend who's not well...  and it requires a certain level of vulnerability and you've got to have a trust, comfort level, but, that's another thing like as leaders, the best thing you can do is demonstrate this kind of behavior so that other people know it's okay to do it.” - Doug Gaff

    DOUG GAFF - VP of Engineering @ Zapier

    Doug is the VP of Engineering at Zapier, the software solution that helps your other software work together more effectively. As the leader of an organization with over 100 engineers, he has learned a lot about effective management and leadership. Doug currently resides in the Greater Boston Area.

    EMMA TANG - Engineering Manager @ Stripe

    Emma is an Engineering Manager in Data Infrastructure at Stripe based in San Francisco. Her team focuses on building distributed computation infrastructure to support Stripe's business. At Stripe, we believe in investing in our remote culture, and have built out the remote engineering hub, and tripled the number of remote engineers in the last year.

    SHOWNOTES


    Ideas for Remote “Offsites” (3:27)
    How to ensure clear, high-bandwidth communication (5:44)
    How to make engineers feel connected to the mission and company (9:44)
    Measuring productivity with “Innovation Accounting” and “Waterlining” (15:03)
    It's time to trust your people and fix your cultural anti-patterns (21:19)
    How to prevent developer burnout (25:03)
    How to influence leadership teams remotely (28:26)
    How to communicate priorities to multiple groups and teams (33:00)
    Health metrics to track your team - Happiness surveys, pull requests, and “innovation accounting” (35:11)
    Takeaways (38:34)


    ELC SUMMIT 2020

    Accelerate your growth as an engineering leader at the ELC Summit! Learn from 100+ incredible speakers. Talks cover tons of well-rounded curated topics. There will be opportunities for hands-on practice through workshops (+ other programs),  and speed networking with other eng leaders through our own custom-built platform!

    More details and tickets @ http://elcsummit.com

    Join our community of software engineering leaders @ https://sfelc.com/


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    Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/engineeringleadership/message

    • 41 min
    How to Become a Startup VPE with Martin Casado, General Partner @ Andreessen Horowitz & Sonal Chokshi, Editor in Chief @ Andreessen Horowitz #22

    How to Become a Startup VPE with Martin Casado, General Partner @ Andreessen Horowitz & Sonal Chokshi, Editor in Chief @ Andreessen Horowitz #22

    Martin Casado and Sonal Chokshi explore what makes a great VP of Engineering at startups! You’ll hear how successful VPEs are evaluated, the ideal experience and success criteria. You’ll hear rapid-fire responses covering how to scale yourself, KPIs, the ideal VPE hiring time for startups, and what VPEs should definitely NOT do.

    MARTIN CASADO, GENERAL PARTNER @ ANDREESSEN HOROWITZ

    He was previously cofounder and CTOr at Nicira (acquired by VMware for $1.26 billion). At VMware, Martin was SVP & GM of the Networking and Security Business Unit (which he scaled to a $600 million run-rate). Martin’s early career was at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory working on large-scale simulations for the Department of Defense, networking, and cybersecurity.

    He holds both a PhD and Masters degree in Computer Science from Stanford University, where he created the software-defined networking (SDN) movement and cofounded Illuminics Systems (acquired by Quova). He’s been awarded both the ACM Grace Murray Hopper award and the NEC C&C award, and he’s an inductee of the Lawrence Livermore Lab’s Entrepreneur’s Hall of Fame. Martin serves on the board of: ActionIQ, Astranis, DeepMap, Imply, Kong, Pindrop Security, RapidAPI, SigOpt, and Yubico.

    “In my experience over a number of engineering leaders is whether or not they're a good engineer is totally orthogonal to the actual role. And in fact, someone that's deeply passionate about a particular architecture technology or approach can be very damaging because you have a power asymmetry in the team.” - Martin Casado

    SONAL CHOKSHI, EDITOR IN CHIEF @ ANDREESSEN HOROWITZ AKA "a16z" 

    Sonal built and oversees all of Andreessen Horowitz’s editorial operations, including showrunning and hosting the a16z Podcast, leading production of the a16z Crypto Canon; and more. Prior to a16z Sonal was a Senior Editor at Wired. Prior to that, Sonal was responsible for content and community at Xerox PARC. Before moving back to California from NYC, Sonal was doing graduate work in developmental and cognitive psychology at Columbia University's school of education and worked as a researcher "ethnographer" on NSF grants around teacher professional development and early numeracy. She studied English and Psychology at UCLA.

    SHOWNOTES


    Hiring misconceptions & Why VPs of Engineering are so valuable (4:21)
    Ideal experience and success criteria for a Startup VPE (8:45)
    Does a VPE need to be a good engineer? (10:56)
    Two key areas VPEs are evaluated (13:01)
    How to balance product and engineering as a VPE (17:34)
    The hard issue of managing people (19:54)
    Why engineering analytics and conscious decisions are important to building great engineering orgs (22:24)
    Good KPIs and how to scale yourself as a VPE (24:19)
    When is the right time to become a VPE at a startup? (26:25)
    What a VPE should NOT do (27:44)
    What is a CTO’s role and how do you work with them as a VPE? (31:00)
    Takeaways (32:0)

    LINKS

    a16z Podcast

    ANNOUNCEMENT

     The ELC Summit has arrived! This is our annual conference to celebrate and inspire great leadership in engineering.

    Head to ELCSUMMIT.COM for more details!


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    • 35 min
    Conscious Career Growth (part 2) with Wade Chambers, CTO & SVP of Engineering @ Grand Rounds #21

    Conscious Career Growth (part 2) with Wade Chambers, CTO & SVP of Engineering @ Grand Rounds #21

    Your job as an engineering leader is to win and increase your capacity to win. In Part 2, Wade Chambers discusses how to measure success for engineering leaders, what great looks like, AND how to increase your team’s performance and improve their potential! You’ll also hear how to get unstuck and move your career forward.

    "And the more that you can come up with, well, what does it mean to be a great manager? Or what does it mean to be a great leader? Answering those questions for yourself and actually getting to the point where you have confidence and are willing to stand behind it because it's well-reasoned and like it's a principled point of view... will help you improve" - Wade Chambers

    Wade oversees all aspects of engineering and technology innovation as the CTO & SVP of Engineering at Grand Rounds. With more than 25 years of engineering leadership experience, he has deep technical domain expertise and a successful track record of scaling teams and leaders, market-defining technology innovations, and business growth for companies of all sizes including Twitter, TellApart, Yahoo, and Opsware. Before Silicon Valley, Wade served in the military and the White House Situation Room.

    SHOWNOTES


    How to measure success, “win, and increase your capacity to win” (2:32)
    How to increase the potential of people on your team (8:24)
    How to get unstuck in your career (12:31)
    The 3 “buckets” to help identify where your career growth is stuck (16:53)
    How to maximize learning and growth from the books you read (21:23)
    How to get to the core principles that drive your behavior (25:52)
    Wade’s final thoughts on closing the gap between where you are and where you want to be (29:38)
    Takeaways (31:41)

    ANNOUNCEMENT

    Nominations for the 2020 Inspiring Leadership Award are now open!

    We created this award to recognize role models of engineering leadership, for the work they do every day to make a difference in their teams and organizations.

    Share their story with us and submit a nomination at:



    SFELC.COM/SUMMIT2020/AWARD



    Join our community of software engineering leaders @ https://sfelc.com


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    • 36 min

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