/Charity Majors

Questionable Advice: The Trap Of The Premature Senior tl;dr: Charity is asked for advice by an engineer who has "accidentally" becomes the most senior on a team. Her advice is to leave. A "real senior engineer" has managed 2-3 teams, stacks, languages over a 5-8 year period.

featured in #213

Things To Know About Engineering Levels tl;dr: Charity often talks to engineers who feel stuck in their role and offers insights in how to approach the issue - "generalists level up faster than specialists," it's easier to level up quickly at fast-growing companies, and more.

featured in #207

If Management Isn't A Promotion, The Engineering Isn't A Demotion tl;dr: Although hierarchy is deeply established in our culture, management shouldn't be seen as a promotion - "we should invert the hierarchy and embrace management as a service role, a support position." Charity shares a roadmap to change company culture.

featured in #205

The Official, Authorized List Of Legitimate Reasons For Deciding To Become a Manager tl;dr: "People make career moves for a complex mix of altruism and self-interest." Charity outlines main motivations to become managers concluding that management is "a role of service to others not dominance over others; staffed by people who genuinely take joy in that people side of sociotechnical problem solving."

featured in #204

Questionable Advice: Can Engineering Productivity Be Measured? tl;dr: Charity doesn't believe so - metric can be gamed, preferring a combination of (1) impact focused, outcome-based management (2) team level health metrics (3) engineering ladder and regular lightweight reviews (4) managers who are well calibrated across the org. Teams should also use the 4 DORA metrics.

featured in #193

On Messing Up Your Remote Team - And Then Getting It Right tl;dr: In the early stages of Charity's business when the founding team was still establishing the core business, bringing remote workers into brainstorming sessions didn't work. She learnt that remote workers require more structure & clear remits, which can only be provided once a business has a degree of focus. 

featured in #161

SLOs Are The API For Your Engineering Team tl;dr: Engineering productivity is hampered by outside management requesting features, shifting priorities, etc... SLOs are the "abstraction layer" for those trying to interact or collaborate with your team. Charity runs through how this works.

featured in #159

The (Real) 11 Reasons I Don't Hire You tl;dr: Being rejected from a job interview is often taken personally. This is an exhaustive list of why someone may not be hired and the nuances behind hiring decisions.

featured in #158

On Pain, Careers, And Doing Things The Hard Way tl;dr: Two instances where the author endured emotional pain in her job - public speaking and transitioning from a CTO to CEO. In the former, she overcome the pain of public speaking by powering through it. This never worked for the second. As a result, she notes the importance of pain as a teacher and understanding the situations where you can lean into it.

featured in #140