[bonus] Scaling the Rocket Ship w. Julia Austin of DigitalOcean

Our episode today is from the archives.  Julia Austin is the CTO of DigitalOcean and a Senior Lecturer at Harvard Business School of Entrepreneurial Management.  Hear about her experiences scaling at rocket ship speed leading DigitalOcean’s engineering and product teams.

Find Julia on twitter at @austinfish and find DigitalOcean at DigitalOcean.com

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0.38 – Understanding People is a Superpower; @rands, VP Engineering at Slack

Michael Lopp (also known as @rands) is a Silicon Valley-based engineering leader who builds both people and product at companies such as Borland, Netscape, Palantir, Pinterest, and Apple. While he’s not worrying about staying relevant, he writes about pens, bridges, people, poker, and werewolves at the popular weblog, Rands in Repose. He works as the VP of Engineering at Slack in San Francisco where he’s furiously working on helping teams reinvent work.
Michael has written two books. His first book “Managing Humans, 3rd Edition” is a popular guide to the art of engineering leadership and clearly explains that while you be rewarded for what you build, you will only be successful because of your people. His second book “Being Geek” is a career handbook for geeks and nerds alike.

Michael plays hockey, mountain bikes, tinkers with drones, and drinks red wine in the redwoods of Northern California whenever he can because staying sane is more important than staying busy.

Favorite Quotes:

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0.37 – From Startup CTO to Acquired by Google — Anant Jhingran, CTO @Apigee

Anant Jhingran has been in the tech industry for 27 years, and has a PhD in Database Systems from Berkeley.  He’s been at IBM, CTO of Apigee, and then after Apigee was acquired, at Google.

Apigee manages an API & data layer for various large enterprises .  They look at the data exhaust of those systems and understand patterns so people can improve what they’re doing through the APIs.  Apigee was recently acquired by Google, and Anant is working on integrating their technologies into Google’s infrastructure.
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0.36 – From Zero to Sphero w. Ian Bernstein, CTO @Sphero

Our guest this week is Ian Bernstein, CTO of Sphero.  Sphero is creating a new category of toys called “Connected Toys” that take the best of what kids and adults love about their smart devices and fuse it with our robots that exist in the real world. 

Ian’s passion is in electronics and robotics. Ever since he was 12 years old he has been building robots.  Learn about how he parlayed his love of robotics into one of the most successful robotics company in the country.  Sphero is a robotic ball that can be controlled with a smartphone.  The company also makes the BB-8 toy robot featured prominently in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. 

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0.35 – Reinventing the Organization w. Dan Kador, CTO of Keen.io

Dan Kador is the co-founder & CTO of Keen.io.  He’s responsible for building the technology and team responsible for analytics via APIs (among a million other things) at Keen — a leader in the analytics space.  Join us to learn about the growth of Keen.io at 3, 10, 30, and (soon) 100 team members; and Dan & his co-founders journey to building a different type of organization — with a team that’s got the autonomy, purpose, and tools they need to deliver great analytics software.
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0.34 — Building for Massive Scale w. Tim Jenkins, CTO of SendGrid

Today we are honored to be joined by Tim Jenkins, CoFounder & CTO of SendGrid.   SendGrid solves problems for companies sending transactional e-mail. Tim is currently involved with back-end development, operations, and support, and has worn many hats as SendGrid has grown from 3 team members to over 300 over the last 8 years.

Join us to hear the founding story of one of the most successful email deliverability providers on the web, take a journey through the ebb & flow of a CTO’s responsibilities as a company scales massively, and learn about how SendGrid’s culture has been defined by the 4 H’s: honest, hungry, humble, and happy.
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[bonus] – Cross-Training with Sales & Marketing ft. @patio11


Learn about how Patrick McKenzie combined his technical skills with marketing/sales skills to launch & grow several successful internet businesses.

Patrick is the creator of Bingo Card Creator. He learned marketing and sales to launch and grow Kalzumeus Software; He has worked with 37signals, Fog Creek Software, and is now in content & community at Stripe.

Find Patrick on twitter at @patio11 and listen to Patrick’s podcast here.

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0.33 – Bend the Learning Curve by Consistently Putting Yourself into a Place You’re Uncomfortable — Kathy Keating

We’re joined this week by guest co-host Diana Pfeil to interview Kathy Keating —  Kathy is a Colorado based Startup CTO who has helped build several successful technology startups, founded her own technology consulting business, guided product strategy for companies and implemented many complex software applications.  

Join us for the first episode of StartupCTO.io in 2017 to discuss Kathy’s approach to building a startup from the ground up, data & analytics, being involved in the community, mentorship, and creating great software teams.
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[Bonus] – Hire Engineers that are Smarter Than You Are w. Jud Valeski

(review this episode on iTunes)

This week’s episode is from the archives.  It’s an interview with Jud Valeski.  Jud was co-founder of Gnip (acquired by Twitter), a real-time data portability software initiative. From client-side consumer facing products, to large scale back-end infrastructure projects, he has enjoyed working with technology for over twenty years. He’s been a part of engineering, product, and M&A teams at IBM, Netscape, onebox.com, and AOL. He has played a central role in the release of a wide range of products used by tens of millions of users worldwide.

Find Jud on twitter at @jvaleski and at http://one.valeski.org/.

Don’t miss out on future episodes! Subscribe quickly at StartupCTO.io/subscribe.

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0.32 — Engineering Values Roundup

We ask each of our guests what their engineering values are. What we love about this question is that the answers boil down the brass tacks of leadership into 2-3 minutes of fundamentals.

We’ve got a fun little thematic episode this week, with 5 answers to this question “What are your engineering values?” jammed packed into a 15 minute episode.

In order of appearance:

  • Nader Akhnoukh– CTO of Kapost
  • Travis Kimmel — CEO of GitPrime
  • Julia Austin — CTO of Digital Ocean
  • Manuel Mattke — Chief Innovation Officer at Opportunity Education
  • Maria Gutierrez & Glenn Vanderburg — Maria is VP Engineering at FreeAgent and Glen is VP Engineering at First.