What’s Hagakure?

Hagakure means “hidden by the leaves” and is the title of a Japanese practical and spiritual guide for the warrior by Yamamoto Tsunetomo. The Book of the Samurai — as it is subtitled — consists of a series of short reflections giving both insight and instruction on a wide variety of subjects, in no particular sequence.

This newsletter aspires to the same mindset. It exists to help technology leaders at all levels to explore, connect dots, and grow. Everyone’s welcome, though.

Who’s behind this?

I’m Paulo, and I have been working for technology companies in Europe for a good few years now. In the recent past, I have taken engineering leadership roles at some fast growing startups and scale-ups in the food, travel and learning & development spaces.

At present, I coach leaders who want to do better, and know that what got us here won't get us there.

I believe the dichotomy between caring for people and building competitive businesses is a false dichotomy. It is predicated on a misunderstanding of how product development works, how people learn and how they're motivated. It lives on because companies can't be A/B tested.

I believe in the value of being a well-rounded generalist. My whole life has been about exploration and going for what inspires me. I do think that has served me well and made me a better individual. This newsletter is about paying that forward.

Why do I write?

Three key reasons:

  • I write to think. Writing clarifies your thinking. Writing well is also a superpower. The more you write, the more you improve your thinking while also improving your writing. In my case, there’s a side quest of becoming a more disciplined and consistent individual. Writing on a schedule, every week, is good practice.

  • I write to help. Thanks to hands-on practice, and from the experience of others, I learned a lot about engineering leadership over the last decade. I intend to pay this forward and help others by sharing my own tacit knowledge.

  • I write to explore. I am not convinced about the way we work, generally speaking. Growth brings opportunity, but too often it squashes all humanity out of those doing the work. I got a glimpse of what’s wrong, but also where (and who) to turn to for making it better. My writing is then also partly about this exploration towards fixing the way we work.

What to expect?

1 issue per week, every Thursday at 5pm CET, on the dot.

You will also receive a Sunday Edition every Sunday at 5pm CET, with a selection of the best I read that week.

My content won’t fix your problems — but it may give you mental models to help you think and apply against your own context and needs.

Why subscribe?

Get full access to the newsletter and website and never miss an update. Every new edition of the newsletter goes directly to your inbox.

I promise to not waste your time.

Subscribe to The Hagakure

Sense-making for tech leaders in a complex world.


Paulo André

Fixing the way we work. Leadership/Executive Coach. Bookworm. Former VP Engineering, Engineer.