Zach Peters

Being Glue — No Idea

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created: 2022-06-02T19:05:59 (UTC -05:00) tags: good-articles source: author:

Being Glue — No Idea Blog


Slides and notes for the Being Glue talk.

Talk Abstract:

Your job title says “software engineer”, but you seem to spend most of your time in meetings. You’d like to have time to code, but nobody else is onboarding the junior engineers, updating the roadmap, talking to the users, noticing the things that got dropped, asking questions on design documents, and making sure that everyone’s going roughly in the same direction. If you stop doing those things, the team won’t be as successful. But now someone’s suggesting that you might be happier in a less technical role. If this describes you, congratulations: you’re the glue. If it’s not, have you thought about who is filling this role on your team?

Every senior person in an organisation should be aware of the less glamorous - and often less-promotable - work that needs to happen to make a team successful. Managed deliberately, glue work demonstrates and builds strong technical leadership skills. Left unconscious, it can be career limiting. It can push people into less technical roles and even out of the industry.

Let’s talk about how to allocate glue work deliberately, frame it usefully and make sure that everyone is choosing a career path they actually want to be on.


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Thank you!

💖💖💖Thank so much to the organisers of the amazing Lead Developer conference where I presented this version of these slides. Thank you also to the organizers of the equally amazing Write/Speak/Code conference who accepted the first iteration of this talk. You are wonderful folks and I so appreciate the work you do. 💖💖💖


AMAZING Sketchnotes by Denise Yu: