The following is my Manager README. It outlines how I approach managing, what my values and expectations are, and how I best work with others. The canonical source for my Manager README can be found here.

Motivation for this document #

Hey everyone! This is is my manager README. It describes a little bit about me and how I approach being a manager. By the end of this document you should have a good idea of my values, expectations, quirks, and how we can best work together.

My role #

My role is to help teams succeed in building quality software in an efficient manner. I do that through several avenues:

  • Developing high-level organizational objectives and strategies.
  • Collaborating with Product Managers to refine features that teams will build.
  • Mentoring and leading Engineers at all levels.
  • Ensuring that Engineers understand product vision and their role on the team.
  • Working with Engineering Managers on recruitment and retention.

What do I value most? #

I value pragmatism over idealism. Let’s discuss what the ideal world would look like, but let’s also be pragmatic and build toward that, knowing that discussion doesn’t move us forward.

I value action over continuous discussion. We should discuss issues before taking action, but we should also work together to ensure that we don’t have the same discussions over and over. Once we’ve identified a problem, let’s decide on what to do next and do it.

I value continuous learning and improvement. We all have areas where we could improve, myself included! I value those who acknowledge their shortcomings and actively work to making improvements in those areas, whether it’s taking a course, self-reflection, reading blog posts, or reading books.

I value candor over euphemism. Let’s be open and honest with each other, and avoid buzz-words and insincerity.

I value shipping over demos. Our software doesn’t deliver value to anyone until its in the hands of our users.

My expectations #

I expect you to not maintain the status quo. We can build great things together, but that’s only if we both agree to go above and beyond what everyone else is doing.

I expect you to communicate clearly. If you’re having trouble gathering your thoughts on a topic, then I might ask you to write it down in a document first.

I expect for you to meet the commitments that you’ve established, and if you can’t meet those commitments to communicate them clearly to me so that I’m in the loop.

If you’d like to get together for a meeting, then I expect information on what the meeting is about before we meet. If its a quick topic, then this might be a Slack post. If its a more in-depth topic, then I expect a document.

1:1s #

We will have 1:1s either weekly or bi-weekly – it’s your call! These meetings are for you. You won’t be asked to fill out a pre-defined template of questions, although I might have a document that I jot notes down in as we discuss.

We’ll discuss whatever you’d like, although I may ask questions like:

  • Do you have any concerns or blockers I should know about?
  • How are the individuals on your team doing?
  • What one thing can I help you with that would have the biggest impact?

In our 1:1s I’ll write down any Action Items for either you or me to perform. Let’s not just discuss making the world a better place; let’s make it happen.

Personality quirks #

I can be pretty animated in calls. This is usually caused by two things: I’m passionate about what we’re building, and I’ve just downed my third cup of coffee from my mug. If my style is ever too much, feel free to ask me to tone it down a bit. 🙂

I also like to joke! Life is too short to not enjoy it, so I try to enjoy everything, even the “serious” stuff like work. If I say something on Slack and you think I might be joking then I probably am. If you’re not sure then you’re always free to ask! When giving directions, I will state these directions clearly and without humor, so that there is no room for misinterpreting.