Project to Product and Greatness

Jessitron writes:

Software is not an up-front investment that pays off over its use. Software is an ongoing concern, an intricate piece of a business that needs to evolve if the business is going to.

and:

The difference between people good at receiving direction and people who generate their own direction, according to Kegan, is not a personality trait or a skill. It is a way of viewing the world. An epistomology, an “order of consciousness,” a “gradual development of psychological complexity,” a way of defining yourself.

(Read the source post, it’s good.)

This is the same thing that L. David Marquet discusses in one of my favorite talks of all time, Greatness:

(You should also read his book)

He writes:

The leader-leader model not only achieves great improvements in effectiveness and morale but also makes the organization stronger. Most critically, these improvements are enduring, decoupled from the leader’s personality and presence. Leader-leader structures are significantly more resilient, and they do not rely on the designated leader always being right. Further, leader-leader structures spawn additional leaders throughout the organization naturally. It can’t be stopped.

Once you see organizations this way, you cannot unsee it. Providing clarity of the goal and ensuring competence so that you can give control to the individuals on the team is an absolute, complete game changer. And it’s exactly what Jessitron’s post is all about.

Wednesday Links

  1. How many American children have cut contact with their parents?
  2. Neither common sense nor science seem to be guiding our travel restrictions
  3. American Spaceman, Body and Soul. Absolutely, positively recommended.
  4. My new favorite website (Rest of World) on how tech companies should plan for Hong Kong’s precarious future
  5. As always, SMBC delivers hilarity. This time on how AI will evolve.
  6. Second order anxiety (Boz)
  7. How to engineer flow (this mostly works for me)

On a more professional development note, I’ve been reading Martin Fowler & Team’s excellent Patterns of Legacy Displacement. If you work on legacy software it’s a must-read.

Monday morning links

  1. Why is China smashing it’s tech industry? TL;DR: The government wants to shift the country’s momentum to “hard tech”, away from consumer-facing tech
  2. Jazz musician lettering. My personal favorite is Freddie Hubbard.
  3. David Sacks on the “correct” org charts for startups at different stages
  4. Delegate outcomes, not methods: “Delegation is in part a learning opportunity, and being overly proscriptive about methods robs your delegate of much of the opportunity to learn.” AMEN.
  5. Farm Bank let players make money, while supporting real farms. Then the CEO vanished with $80 million
  6. Walter Kirn on the state of journalism today, recommended
  7. Why “Bring solutions, not problems” isn’t really the best approach
  8. A retrospective on Jeff Bezos’ famous memo
  9. How China is tweaking the story of Christ to fit the CCP’s desired narrative

And finally: Games people play with cash flow