Scaling is a massive challenge for an engineering manager to overcome, let alone scaling in a distributed environment. Juan Pablo Buriticá had done it, and in this interview he shares how he managed to pull it off. You'll get his insights and actionable tips to overcome all the issues a tech leader will face when scaling distributed engineering teams.
In this interview we're covering:
Challenges of scaling distributed engineering teams
Steps of scaling distributed engineering teams
Difference between scaling from small to medium, and medium to large size
How did you scale distributed engineering teams at Splice?
How to change a process while scaling distributed engineering teams?
Your key takeaways from scaling distributed engineering teams
Bonus advice for scaling distributed engineering teams
Excerpt from the interview:
"Scaling an organization requires a lot of work with no tangible output. It’s about building a culture and processes; it requires a lot of attention, moderation, curation, and loads of conversations with humans. Humans can be exhausting with insecurities and all the stuff we bring with ourselves, because we're not machines.
As a leader, that falls on you. I’ve done it twice, and if I had to do it again, I may use some shortcuts, but it's going to be different, and still a lot of work. That’s the first takeaway. Looking back, it was worth it, because it was exciting. It’s rewarding when you get it to work well, and I'm proud of our team.
When scaling distributed engineering teams, be ready for a lot of work, repetition, communication, convincing and loads of complaints. Some people have followed me through teams. We agreed that when they complain, I ask, “Do you want me to solve this?” If they say yes, I do, but then they have to look for something else to complain about. We just laugh at that.
I like complaints, because it's feedback as we're scaling. I've seen other leaders who can't deal with it."