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Maria Gutierrez - A Clear-Eyed Look at Distributed Teams

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Distributed teams can have big benefits for both employers and employees, but there are many challenges. Being successful requires changes to work practices, communication, and style — and not just from the remote people. Everyone will experience changes. To better support your team, it helps to be prepared. In this talk, we will look at the challenges and rewards of working in a distributed team setting based on several years of experience growing large distributed engineering teams.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Maria Gutierrez - A Clear-Eyed Look at Distributed Teams

  1. 1. A clear-eyed look at DISTRIBUTED TEAMS HELLO my name is María Gutiérrez VP Engineering @ FreeAgent @mariagutierrez
  2. 2. A clear-eyed look at DISTRIBUTED TEAMS HELLO my name is María Gutiérrez VP Engineering @ FreeAgent @mariagutierrez
  3. 3. “How did I freelance for 10 yrs without @freeagent? Bookkeeping a breeze, auto invoice chasing and my support email answered in 32 minutes” @tomcopy
  4. 4. Committed to build a DIVERSE, HIGH PERFORMING, AND HAPPY TEAM
  5. 5. 1/3 engineers WFH
  6. 6. 2000
  7. 7. 2000 2001
  8. 8. 2000 2001 2004
  9. 9. 2000 2001 2004 2008
  10. 10. 2000 2001 2004 2008 2011
  11. 11. ~180 engineers worldwide ~80 in my team DC, Portland,Boulder, All overthe US, Scotland,India, Australia,Brazil I was working from my house in Scotland for ~5years Travelling to DC or other offices once a quarter
  12. 12. 2000 2001 2004 2008 2011 2016
  13. 13. MIKAELA NOGLE DEJLIGE GADE ODENSE DENMARK DEAR MIKAELA, THE WEATHER IS FAB AND WE ARE HAVING AN AMAZING TIME ON HOLIDAY. CAN’T WAIT TO SHOW YOU ALL THE PHOTOS! LOVE, MARIA BARCELONA 10 JUNE 92
  14. 14. Show your COMMITMENT
  15. 15. CRITICAL MASS Avoid snowflakes
  16. 16. Break through GLASS CEILINGS
  17. 17. Treat on-site and remote FAIRLY NOT EQUALLY
  18. 18. @mariagutierrez Communicate INTENTIONALLY
  19. 19. Patrick Lencioni, “Five dysfunctions of a team”
  20. 20. COLLABORATE daily to build trust
  21. 21. being visible being honest and open being responsive delivering being consistent
  22. 22. SHOW YOUR WORK
  23. 23. ETIQUETTE Permission to play values
  24. 24. WATCH THE WORK not the worker
  25. 25. DO YOUR HOMEWORK Budget, law, expectations
  26. 26. Strengthens your company COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES
  27. 27. Angela Senior Software Engineer Staffordshire 1 month
  28. 28. Thomas Head of Infrastructure Cambridge 6.5 years
  29. 29. Anup Mobile Team Lead Sutton 4 years
  30. 30. Eva Software Engineer Edinburgh 1.5 years
  31. 31. “I rarely think about looking for a job at another company” “I see myself still working at FreeAgent in two years time” “My manager genuinely cares about my wellbeing”
  32. 32. BE INTENTIONAL srsly!
  33. 33. THANKS! @mariagutierrez I’ve got Winston stickers, come and say “Hi!” Illustrations by the amazing FreeAgent designers

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