Lessons from 

the World’s Biggest 

Distributed Company
Davide Casali
@folletto
Lori McLeese
@loriloo
CHAPTER 1
Hiring
What we’re looking for
Technical
Skills
Culture
Fit
Before 

The Trial
–Test basic skills
–Interest in Open Source
–Humility
The Trial
Finite Project,
Paid
Communication
& Independence
Mostly
Text Based
Do I like the way they work and
collaborate?
Both parties get insights
Is the candidate able to work in a
distributed envi...
Meeting in person
All Company
Meetups
Team
Meetups
CHAPTER 2
Scaling
COMMUNICATION IS OXYGEN
Tools?
IRC / Skype O2 Field Guide
REALTIME ASYNC STORAGE
Team
Chat O2
Transparency
Culture
“
”
SCOTT ADAMS
Management exists to 

minimize the problems created by 

its own hiring mistakes.
Thanks
Davide Casali
@folletto
Lori McLeese
@loriloo
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Lessons from the World’s Biggest Distributed Company

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David Casali @folletto AUTOMATTIC
Lori McLeese @loriloo AUTOMATTIC

Really big companies usually have workers in offices around the globe. But Automattic, the company behind WordPress, has its workers in home offices around the globe–with no central headquarters. At more than 230 employees in 30 countries and growing fast, the company is leading the way for fully distributed teams and has lessons for us all. Davide Casali, UX Redirector, will look at the key elements Automattic uses to support remote collaboration–not just the tools, but the way teams are organized and make decisions, all of which have evolved as the company has grown. Lori McLeese, HR Lead, will talk about the unusual, in-depth process that Automattic uses to hire people and ensure they’re a fit for a fully distributed team. Their talks will be followed by a joint Q&A with attendees.

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Lessons from the World’s Biggest Distributed Company

  1. 1. Lessons from the World’s Biggest Distributed Company Davide Casali @folletto Lori McLeese @loriloo
  2. 2. CHAPTER 1 Hiring
  3. 3. What we’re looking for Technical Skills Culture Fit
  4. 4. Before The Trial –Test basic skills –Interest in Open Source –Humility
  5. 5. The Trial Finite Project, Paid Communication & Independence Mostly Text Based
  6. 6. Do I like the way they work and collaborate? Both parties get insights Is the candidate able to work in a distributed environment? Is the candidate able to trouble shoot on their own? Can the candidate take a project and run with it? Do I enjoy working in a distributed environment? Do I feel I’m able to communicate effectively? CANDIDATE AUTOMATTIC
  7. 7. Meeting in person All Company Meetups Team Meetups
  8. 8. CHAPTER 2 Scaling
  9. 9. COMMUNICATION IS OXYGEN
  10. 10. Tools? IRC / Skype O2 Field Guide REALTIME ASYNC STORAGE
  11. 11. Team Chat O2
  12. 12. Transparency
  13. 13. Culture
  14. 14. “ ” SCOTT ADAMS Management exists to minimize the problems created by its own hiring mistakes.
  15. 15. Thanks Davide Casali @folletto Lori McLeese @loriloo

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