16 episodes

Welcome to The Better Build, a podcast that explores the world of software engineering leadership, and the people who are shaping it.

This podcast is presented by Mission, an award-winning network and platform for fully managed teams of senior-level software engineers to find opportunities and continue to level-up. For more information, check out mission.dev

The Better Build Mission

    • Technology

Welcome to The Better Build, a podcast that explores the world of software engineering leadership, and the people who are shaping it.

This podcast is presented by Mission, an award-winning network and platform for fully managed teams of senior-level software engineers to find opportunities and continue to level-up. For more information, check out mission.dev

    Scaling Mountains and Metrics with Iana Vitkova (Wiser Solutions)

    Scaling Mountains and Metrics with Iana Vitkova (Wiser Solutions)

    Host Gabriel Sundaram of Mission sits with guest Iana Vitkova, Senior Director of Engineering at Wiser Solutions, to discuss her journey from software engineer to leader, highlighting her passion for team development and high performance strategies. They discuss Wiser's innovative approach to leveraging data and analytics for retail optimization, the logistics of managing a global workforce, and the challenges of coordinating teams across different time zones. Iana also emphasizes the importance of early collaboration between engineering, product management, and design to align business objectives with user needs, offering valuable insights for anyone navigating software engineering leadership.
    Key topics:
    The value of being a product manager (11:27)
    The benefits of low cost experimentation (23:39)
    Why it's important for engineers to understand the business context (25:11)
    Where Iana believes AI will land (28:53)
    The leadership enhancing benefits of joining Toastmasters (31:14)
    "it's an industry that really forces you to continue to grow and to learn" (36:17)

    • 39 min
    The Socratic Method of Managing with Loren Verheyden (SailPoint)

    The Socratic Method of Managing with Loren Verheyden (SailPoint)

    Mission CEO Stephane Rossi sits with Loren Verheyden, Engineering Manager at SailPoint, to get into her effective managing strategies and professional journey. From building a supercomputer during her college years to navigating the challenges of remote team management, Lauren shares her unique experiences and insights. We discuss her transition from software developer to manager, the importance of effective communication, and the lessons she learned while leading diverse teams. Lauren also provides valuable tips on active listening, handling rejection, and the balance between mentoring and coaching.
    Key topics:
    The transition from engineer to manager (9:30)
    Experience with Write / Speak / Code (14:13)
    Essential managerial skills to develop (18:49)
    How to speak to your audience (22:43)
    The Socratic method of managing (35:18)

    • 43 min
    SPECIAL EPISODE - Virtual Panel: Deploying AI - Challenges & Best Practices in Enterprise

    SPECIAL EPISODE - Virtual Panel: Deploying AI - Challenges & Best Practices in Enterprise

    This special episode was taken from a recent virtual panel held by Mission with special guests Naomi Goldapple (SVP of Data & Intelligence at Alayacare | Digital Strategist | Entrepreneur) and Fred Chanay (AI & Data Science most recently at UKG | Product Executive | Tech Ventures), hosted by Mission Co-Founder Gabriel Sundaram.
    To join us for events like these, follow us on LinkedIn and connect with us at mission.dev

    • 52 min
    A Result is Only as Good as the System which Begets It with Yevgen Reztsov (Bison, Walmart, Intuit)

    A Result is Only as Good as the System which Begets It with Yevgen Reztsov (Bison, Walmart, Intuit)

    Mission Co-founder Gabriel Sundaram sits down with Yevgen Reztsov (currently working on a stealth mode startup, formerly Walmart Global Tech, Intuit, Bison Technologies) for one of our most technical deep dives into AI yet! Listen to this episode whether you're an expert on the subject or just want to become one, as Yevgen is excellent at making even dense subject matter accessible without dumbing it down.
    Here are some other key topics from their wide-ranging conversation:
    What's missing for teams trying to do machine learning (09:22)
    A story on how customers can misuse AI if you don't deploy it carefully (26:12)
    A window into the San Diego community and tech scene (28:27)
    A warning on highly unpopular remote management decisions and how to avoid them (34:17)
    Why "one size fits all" policies can be destructive (34:42)
    How to avoid purely transactional meetings (37:36)
    "I feel like the outcome you observe is an inevitable result of the system that begets it." (48:26)

    • 54 min
    When You’re a Founder, You’re Trying to Break Something - with Raymond Luk (Hockeystick, Flow)

    When You’re a Founder, You’re Trying to Break Something - with Raymond Luk (Hockeystick, Flow)

    Mission CTO & Co-Founder Fred Brunel sits with Raymond Luk (Hockeystick, Flow) for an insightful conversation into founding, investing, AI, and the importance of making time to be around people in our increasingly remote world.
    Key Takeaways
    The unintended consequences of remote work (11:18)
    Spending time with founders (26:02)
    The "no pain, no gain" mindset (38:25)
    The challenges of finding "A" Players (41:36)

    • 44 min
    Keeping the User in Control with Kaj van de Loo (UserTesting)

    Keeping the User in Control with Kaj van de Loo (UserTesting)

    In this episode of The Better Build, hosts Stephane Rossi (Mission CEO and Co-Founder) and Fred Brunel (Mission CTO and Co-Founder) sit down with Kaj Van de Loo, a seasoned engineering leader and CTO at UserTesting, to explore his journey through the software engineering landscape and discuss the present and future of AI.
    From his early days at SAP Labs to leading innovative projects at Oracle and UserTesting, Kaj shares insights into the evolution of software engineering, the impact of AI and machine learning, the critical role of AI in transforming engineering practices, and the importance of user feedback in driving successful AI adoption.
    Key takeaways:
    The system analyst process (02:42)
    Not seeing the value for the customer during the dot-com era (06:50)
    The challenge of explaining one's value (07:50)
    Pinpointing the big takeaways and real value of professional experience (14:50)
    How user feedback is the key to successful adoption of AI products (20:59)
    Are coding skills becoming irrelevant? (33:08)

    • 37 min

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