Starters vs. Closers

I haven’t written a new blog post in a while because my new role has given me new perspective and I am personally learning a lot and organizing my thoughts so I can share them with everyone. One way to describe the change in my role, and what I suspect others have come across, goes…

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Ambiguity Can Be Your Friend

Six months ago, I took on a new role at Microsoft.  I haven’t written a blog entry in a while because of all the work I was doing in my new role.  I spent 10 weeks as an individual contributor before building a new team and it was a really fascinating time for me as…

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Are You an Employee or a Founder?

If you search on the differences between a “founder” and an “employee”, you will see a lot of articles on start-ups, shares of stock, being an entrepreneur, etc.  And if we look at the definition of a founder, it is someone who establishes or creates.  Ironically, the verb form of the word means to fill…

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7 Mistakes New Managers Should Avoid

When you move into a people manager role, it’s usually because you are doing a great job as an individual contributor.  Being a manager is quite different than being an individual contributor. Instead of only being concerned with getting your own work done, you are now responsible for a whole team of people getting their…

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6 Ways for Engineers to Connect with Their Customers

Satya Nadella’s strategy for Microsoft is “Mobile First Cloud First”.  That’s helped keep teams inside the company stay focused on the right objectives, but it only describes the “what” and not the “how”.  For the how, we should think “Quality First Customer First”.  Quality can mean a lot of things and I listed out some…

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Quality First

Whether you are a developer, a tester, or in a combined Software Engineering role, understanding the fundamental thinking behind testing your own code is of significant importance to producing solid, quality services for our customers.  Due to this, I’d like to spend some time directing you to some of my previous blog posts pertaining specifically…

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It’s Not Over, Till It’s Over

The word “over” can mean a lot of positive things.  “Over the rainbow” is where you find your pot of gold.  “Turn over a new leaf” means you’re changing your ways or stopping a bad habit.  And “head over heels” describes falling in love.  Yet, the word “under” usually means something negative.  “Getting under my…

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How Many Days Away Are You?

Here is how a career as people manager typically plays out.  You are an engineer and really good at what you do.  You are an expert in a technology or a specific domain.  Then you become the boss.  Your main responsibility isn’t to be the expert anymore.  It’s to manage and grow experts on your…

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Imperfection is the Way to Agility!

The term “perfectionist” is one that most people are familiar with.  Either because we are one or we know someone who is one.  Many times, being a perfectionist adds a ton of value to your work, your team, etc.  As one, you are driven to do the right things to a level of detail most…

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Don’t Fall Asleep with Geckos

A few years ago, I had the great opportunity to take a 2 month sabbatical fully-paid by Microsoft.  For this time off, I absolutely did not want to just sit around at home.  I arranged one month for my family to “live” in Hawaii.  It was awesome and something the whole family will always remember. …

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