This guide is intended to establish my expectations of the leaders with whom I work so we create a great working relationship together. Part of this is having a better understanding of what matters to me. This is meant to provide you a high-level overview of key behaviors I see in those most successful in working with me.
- Demonstrate passionate business ownership: A visible business-owner mindset counts for a lot with me. We’re here to make things happen.
- Growth Mindset, Personally & Professionally: Develop deep self-awareness and self-actualization; do not allow yourself to be powerless
- Diversity in Thought & Action: I’m autistic. I see the world (very) differently than you. I do not expect you to always agree with me; come with well-informed opinions of your own.
- Trust: I tend to give trust freely, but if lost it’s hard to regain.
- Don’t surprise me. Keep me up-to-date on your area. Err on the side of over-communicating.
- Don’t count on me to “sense” when something is wrong. If it’s bothering you, share. I cannot address what I don’t know about.
Other Key Thoughts
Accountability & Leadership
- Be a leader in your area. Know the drivers of your area, dive deep on key issues, and have a plan to address challenges.
- How you operate and what you deliver matters. Create an environment that empowers everyone, and ensures your team is accountable to growing our business. We must deliver on both to be successful.
- Prioritization matters. Focus on growing the business, or if addressing technical debt be able to tie it back to the business in the necessity of limited time.
- Clear, concise thinking. Start with high-level summary, recommendation & options, and then follow-up with validating your recommendations.
- Be proactive and solutions-focused: Don’t wait to share bad news. Come prepared with options and recommended course of action.
- Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. We will learn more from mistakes than we will from many of our successes. Mistakes are a gift; learn from them.
- Build automated/scalable solutions to your challenges and drive impact beyond the boundaries of your area.
Personal Life & Development
- Your career is important to me. Let’s frequently discuss your interests, goals, progress, et cetera.
- Keep things in perspective. I believe in work/life balance, and recognize there are more important things in your life than your job. You manage your own time (not me), find a work/life balance that works for you.
Books That Inspire Me
- Crucial Conversions: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High :: tons of practical feedback on how to have hard conversations with co-workers.
- Radical Candor: Fully Revised & Updated Edition: Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity :: this can be hit and miss, and at times contradictory, but the underlying premise is solid: the unvarnished truth is always better than a sweet untruth
- Theory Z: How American Business Business Can Meet The Japanese Challenge :: I read as an early teen while my father pursued his MBA; I did not comprehend all of it at the time, but it left a lasting impression that had a huge impact on my formative thinking.
- 25 “Best Of” Books on Leadership :: I’ve read or am familiar with everyone of the books on this list. The top 5 I’d recommend first are: 1) The Lean Startup; 2) Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win; 3) Primal Leadership: Unleashing the Power of Emotional Intelligence; 4) Thinking, Fast and Slow; and, 5) The Art of War
- Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life :: A personally transformative book that can change not only how you work with others, but how you fundamentally live and interact with everyone, including yourself.
- The Little Engine That Could :: There is nothing more powerful than the belief you hold in yourself, and by extension as a leader, in your team. I read this obsessively as a child. I may have eaten a copy to fully internalize it when I was 4.
- The Ender Quartet (Ender’s Game, Speaker of the Dead, …) :: Separating for a moment the politics of the author which I abhor, it provides a narrative of a) how every problem is solvable with the right change in perspective; b) first impressions are often wrong; and, c) we always can choose a different path than the one we started on. Good words to live and lead by.