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TGIF: Designing a successful engineering team

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TGIF! We often gravitate towards pieces that discuss the successes (and struggles) of women in tech. But it’s also important to look at the bigger picture of the teams and leaders who help set up engineering teams to be inclusive, equally represented, and supportive. This week we tucked into two piece from engineering team leaders who cracked the code for building thriving, diverse, and ever evolving teams.

Check back at the end of each week for our Friday finds. Here’s what we’re reading – September 14.

Setting up your (engineering) team for success

Should I hire bootcamp grads? Or, “The design of engineering teams” by Jack Danger on Medium and After a huge user revolt, nobody wanted to work at Reddit. 3 years later, the CEO explains how the ‘front page of the internet’ rebuilt the team by Melia Robinson for Business Insider.

What about the pipeline?

One challenge we hear about day in and day out is the dreaded “pipeline problem.” The idea that there’s no good talent, or all the best talent is already taken. But that can be a short-sighted view. In building out a successful engineering team, looking or thinking outside the traditional box of candidates can be a huge boon.

In the case of Reddit, once leadership started looking at non-traditional education backgrounds, the engineering organization started to quickly grow. By reaching out with intent-driven messaging in recruiting they were able to bring in employees who could have a direct and meaningful impact on the business.

Intelligent design

As the landscape of engineering and tech continues to evolve, smart leaders are spending time thoughtfully designing their team structure. Much like you wouldn’t put a product to market without creating the proper pricing tiers, models, and releases, a successful engineering team should have layers.

The first piece this week explores the architecture and hierarchy of a successful team. Much like Reddit started to look outside the box for candidates, Gusto starting creating avenues to onboard junior talent and improve senior-level employees managerial skills and growth track.

What are you reading, watching, and listening to? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


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