Psychological safety in the InfoSec industry April 18th, 2016
My co-worker Eric Mill recently brought up the topic of psychological safety. Referencing a study by Google that points to psychological safety as a key factor in successful teams, Eric wrote: Maybe these situations sounds familiar to others (they definitely both are to me): Did you feel like you could ask what the goal was without the risk of sounding like you’re the only one out of the loop? Or did you opt for continuing without clarifying anything, in order to avoid being perceived as someone who is unaware?…
You have two jobs November 1st, 2017
Welcome to FictionalSoft! I hope your first week is going well? Great. As you start to find your feet, I want to make sure we have a shared understanding of what success looks like here. Apologies in advance if I’m telling you something you already know, but it’s important to be explicit about this early. You were hired to write code. Many developers make the mistake and think that their job stops there.…
Layoffs are Coming March 13th, 2020
It’s looking increasingly likely that the COVID-19 pandemic will cause a recession. It’s easy to think we might be immune from the effects of a global recession, but my experience is that tech companies are quick to cut staff, especially engineers, in the face of declining markets. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think I am. Either way, it’s not going to hurt to prepare.
Embrace the Grind April 7th, 2021
Sometimes, programming feels like magic: you chant some arcane incantation and a fleet of robots do your bidding. But sometimes, magic is mundane. If you’re willing to embrace the grind, you can pull off the impossible.
What is your labor worth? Tech compensation in 2021 October 13th, 2021
Salaries in tech are going up, and many people are looking for new jobs or reevaluating the ones they have. However, many tech workers have no idea what their labor is worth on the open market. There’s a huge information asymmetry here: employers have access to detailed industry data on salaries, but workers don’t. In this article, I’ll share a method people can use to determine the “market rate” for their skills. I’ve developed this method over the last six months, as I’ve helped nearly 100 people figure out their worth. Feedback has been that this is pretty accurate, so I’m sharing the technique here so you can use it to determine what your labor is worth.
Dear Potheads, You Can Work for the U.S. Government, Maybe October 25th, 2021
If you’ve used marijuana, can you still get hired by the Federal Government? Yes, but it’s complicated. I’ll try to explain…
Exit Interviews Are a Trap April 4th, 2022
It’s tempting to air your grievances at your exit interview. Don’t. There’s almost no upside to speaking up, and tremendous potential downside. Avoid exit interviews if you can. If you must go, be totally bland; say nothing negative.
Your last one-on-one: what to do instead of an exit interview April 7th, 2022
Say you agree with me that exit interviews are dangerous for employees, but you’re a kind, empathetic manager who’s built a team with high trust. You’d never dream of retaliation, are open to feedback – even if it’s harsh. You don’t want to put your departing direct in an uncomfortable or threatening position, but you’d like to know what they have to say! What then?