TWH#S6: What I Read This Week
The Sunday Edition #6
Welcome to another TWH Sunday Edition. 👋
Kick back and enjoy these 5 good reads. ☕️
And if you like what you read, please consider hitting the ❤️ button and sharing it.
(Total reading time: 34 min)
✍️ Why Many Tech Companies Suck at Planning and Don't Hit Their Targets
(Maarten Dalmijn • 5 min read)
I find it fascinating how the knowledge (or, dare I say, the wisdom) of what makes for competent complex work is out there, yet it’s so rarely heeded in practice. Most companies keep doing the same thing over and over expecting different results.In this article, Maarten does a masterful job of exposing the illusion of control that planning provides, along with a better way forward.
✍️ Advice for new directors
(Jade Rubick • 9 min read)
I’m a big fan of Jade’s writing and this recent piece on being a great manager of managers is no exception. He covers all the bases, and I especially liked the emphasis on coaching and developing the team of managers as a means to truly scale the org and make it autonomous. His tips on “sensing” the organization are also invaluable, with a rational mix of qualitative and quantitivate inputs.
✍️ Infinite Games
(Jack Raines • 9 min read)
Life is full of finite games played for the sake of winning. And we often don’t realize that victory is more fleeting and onerous than we imagined. Jack Raines draws from James P. Carse’s Finite and Infinite Games (which Simon Sinek also did) to warn us that there’s life and work without enjoyment is meaningless. But as he points out, “The finite and infinite player can accomplish the same things, but doing the work for the sake of doing the work will certainly make the journey more enjoyable, won’t it?”
✍️ Three-Bucket Framework for Engineering Metrics
(Abi Noda • 5 min read)
Bridging the gap between technical and non-technical folks, especially at the senior levels of the organization, is a big part of the engineering leader’s job. Metrics help, but which ones? As Abi Noda points out in his latest newsletter, “If your boss asks for engineering metrics, start by reframing what they’re really asking for.” Then use Abi’s 3 bucket framework to speak to whatever that is.
✍️ Why Limiting WIP, Starting Together, Being Less Busy, and Working Together is SO HARD
(John Cutler • 6 min read)
This is not the first time I read this article and watch the videos embedded in it. But I keep coming back to it every once in a while. It captures so well what I call the “tragedy of the commons” in tech companies that I just feel like re-visiting it at least monthly. This is the key question I grapple with: how come organizations comprised of many talented, bright, and well-intentioned people default organize into a system that produces constant busyness, delivering little value, and making many people feel helpless and meaningless? This post is a great window into why.
That’s it for this week’s Sunday Edition. Thanks for reading The Weekly Hagakure! And if you liked this, please consider hitting the ❤️ button and sharing the post.
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