I'm not so interested in presenting a definitive manager readme for my reports (a little too hokey or self-serving for my taste?) but perhaps there's something here for my own self-evaluation. Might be interesting for me to come back to this in another year or so.

  • Our 1:1 is primarily for you to get the most out of your employment, so that comes first. But it's also for me to get information about what's actually happening across the team. I appreciate your unique insight.
  • Words are important to me; being consistent and careful in your wording will save me from having to probe deeper.
  • Bringing me a problem is fine, but try to bring a few potential solutions, too. I'm stoked to help you refine an idea into something you can action or bring back to the team.
  • Over-communicating means including the context in your communications, and it's especially helpful during these work-from-home periods where we're working more asynchronously than usual.
  • "Managing expectations" is one of the most valuable patterns of behaviour to learn early on. This with breaking down work into discrete pieces before jumping in, and providing updates along the way for those who have a stake in the work.
  • "Requirements gathering" is also up there. Software engineering requires critical thinking not only when writing code, but when evaluating solutions to real problems. Interpreting, clarifying, and validating requirements is key, as well as negotiating the acceptance criteria. These behaviours take time to master, and are critical for high-functioning teams.
  • Meetings are for decisions, and agendas drive decision making. Start and end times keep people on track, but meetings should end as soon as a decision is made.
  • I haven't worked with you before. Please consider giving me tips on how I can best work with you. If you're uncomfortable, please consider giving anonymous feedback to my manager or our human resources team.
  • When you hear me ask "you good?", I'm not asking for a status update. I'm asking if you have everything you need; if you feel confident and on-track, if there's something I can do help you out, or if you have some insight to share with me.
  • Chat with me about technology, programming, architecture, hacking, leadership, agile, books, kettlebells, and arts and culture in general. I'm genuinely interested in things!