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Building High Performance Engineering Teams - Focus on People - Scrum Australia 2014

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Twitter has grown from a handful of engineers to over a 1,000 in a few years. To be successful at such a scale requires finding the right people and making sure they are productive and solving valuable customer problems.

In this session Nicholas shares the techniques Twitter uses to hire amazing people, unleash their productivity, assess their performance, and improve the flock. Don't miss your chance to see how one of the fastest growing tech companies in Silicon Valley operates and retains the brightest talent.

Published in: Recruiting & HR

Building High Performance Engineering Teams - Focus on People - Scrum Australia 2014

  1. 1. building high performance teams focus on people NICHOLAS MULDOON • AGILE COACH • TWITTER • @NJM
  2. 2. focus on people
  3. 3. Here be dragons
  4. 4. 1. Impact - Teams are customer focused 2. Quality - Teams deliver quality, minimising waste 3. Flow - Teams deliver iteratively to maximise learning 4. Kaizen - Teams constantly improve their process high performance teams
  5. 5. (sidebar) scrum is part of the solution vs scrum is the solution
  6. 6. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  7. 7. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  8. 8. roles and ladders
  9. 9. competencies
  10. 10. example competencies Collaboration •Team orientated, helpful and friendly. Puts the goals of the team ahead of individual goals. Knows when to ask for help. Communication • Listens to understand. Clear and concise in speech and writing. • Treats people with respect. • Calm and laid back demeanor. Adaptability •Understands that we'll need to conduct many experiments in order to get it right. •Understands that failure and learning are part of the process, works to build a culture of learning. Creative Problem Solving •Ability to build new things and solve existing problems with incomplete or ambiguous data. •Pushes past existing constraints and limitations. Competence and Impact •Deep technical knowledge and desire for mastery. •Delivers astonishing amounts of valuable work Ownership •Work collaboratively, act independently. Take responsibility for their work, solve their own problems. •Seek to simplify - “pick up the trash”. •Measure success by benefit to customers, not vanity metrics.
  11. 11. (sidebar) customer focus and collaboration vs purely technical candidates
  12. 12. hiring process
  13. 13. top grading
  14. 14. top grading quest ions • What were you hired to do in this role? • What accomplishments are you most proud of in this role? • What were some low points during that job? • Who were the people you worked with? Specifically: • What was your boss’s (or team leader’s) name, and how do you spell that? • What was it like working with him/her? • What will he / she tell me were your biggest strengths and areas for improvement when I talk to them? • How will they rate you on a 1-10 scale? • Why did you leave that job?
  15. 15. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  16. 16. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  17. 17. flight school
  18. 18. dev prod
  19. 19. principles
  20. 20. example principle Iterative, team-based development. We get small teams together with all the relevant skill sets, build in small increments, and pivot based on customer feedback. These teams are co-located and focused on the task at hand, not spread among other priorities. Teams are “stable”, have a clear charter, ownership, and members share accountability. We use light-weight planning techniques to optimize our short term and long term roadmap, respond to changing customer needs, and align with other teams.
  21. 21. (sidebar) optimise the whole vs optimise individuals
  22. 22. methods
  23. 23. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  24. 24. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  25. 25. 360° review (individual)
  26. 26. objective s , key resul ts ( team)
  27. 27. (sidebar) objectives, key results vs backlog
  28. 28. example OKRs Objective: Drive industry-leading end user quality standards • Resiliency: Reduce top-line failure rate (client events) from X% to Y% (at least 15% reduction). • Resiliency: 50% of traffic served from XYZ, maintain five 9’s SLA. • Cost: Reduce XYZ costs in Q1 by $XXM. Develop process, content & visibility for measuring savings. Objective: Build a world class product and engineering team • Hiring: Make offers to X SWEs for Consumer and Platform. • Agility: Increase the “iterative team-based development” survey score by X% (X to X), achieve NPS >60 for training sessions. • Training: All people managers attend at least one learning workshop.
  29. 29. pulse survey (company wide)
  30. 30. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  31. 31. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  32. 32. women in engineering
  33. 33. (sidebar) girls who code
  34. 34. retrospect ives
  35. 35. twitter university
  36. 36. example courses Languages •Scala Essentials (5 days) •ScalaCheck Essentials •Testing Scala Code at Twitter •Andriod Essentials (5 days) •Android Performance •Python Essentials •Android Accessibility Agility •Agile Essentials •Running Effective Retrospectives •Effective Backlog Grooming •Effective User Story Mapping •Effective Code Reviews Twitter Technology •How to Build a Service at Twitter •Twitter Futures •Open Sourcing at Twitter •Distributed Systems for Young Bloods •Database Essentials •Finagle Essentials
  37. 37. tech talks
  38. 38. flocks
  39. 39. Languages •Scala •Python •Erlang •JavaScript Agility •Agile Flock example flocks Twitter Technology •Mesos/Aurora •Manhattan
  40. 40. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  41. 41. hire amazing people unleash productivity review performance improving the flock
  42. 42. Remember : Here be dragons
  43. 43. building high performance teams focus on the people NICHOLAS MULDOON • AGILE COACH • TWITTER • @NJM

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