Articles by Camille Fournier
- The Manager's Path: A Guide for Tech Leaders Navigating Growth and Change
Camille steps through increasing levels of management complexity, from how to be managed and what to expect from a manager, to senior leadership.
- On the role of CTO
Camille discusses the diversity of CTO types and asserts that the CTO should be "the strategic technical executive the company needs in its current stage of evolution." She emphasizes the importance for a CTO to understand the business and have management oversight. She covers: • First, let's start by talking about what a CTO is not. • So, what does a CTO actually DO?
- Are you out of alignment? Examining an often-misunderstood element of success
Camille explains how senior ICs sometimes get stuck because they don't know how to work on projects that are aligned with the success of the organization.
- Building and Motivating Engineering Teams
Camille covers: • The tech industry changed significantly between 2007 and 2016. Stereotypes from 2007 may not apply anymore. • Salary is still important to engineers. Companies need to pay market rate to attract and retain talent. • Purpose and mission are important to inspire engineers. They want to understand the business and have input beyond just technical work. • Engineers want to be involved in non-technical decision making and problem solving to feel connected to the business. • Respect is important. Engineers want to be treated like adults and professionals, not "overgrown children." • Engineers often have more to offer beyond just coding skills and want opportunities to partner with the business. Companies should challenge engineers to understand perspectives outside of engineering. • If companies can't pay top salaries, they need to offer engineers other reasons to join like growth opportunities. • Companies have more talent to choose from now but also more competition. • Finding undeveloped talent and giving engineers a voice beyond the technical are important to attract and retain engineers.
- Sharing Our Engineering Ladder
This is Rent the Runway's career ladder, one of the first to be publicly released back in 2015. Camille initially used a ladder based on one from Foursquare that was simple, but it caused confusion and debate among engineers. To resolve this, she rewrote the ladder with more specific criteria to make it helpful for evaluating candidates and determining promotion. The revised ladder has been useful for reviews and hiring. It groups skills into: Technical Skills, Getting Stuff Done, Impact, and Communication & Leadership.
- When is someone ready to manage managers?
Camille provides a detailed look at the journey from manager of ICs to manager of managers: • How to go from line manager to managing managers • How to practice the skills of managing managers without having manager direct reports