Archive for September, 2012

Delegating is Sharing

One of the primary tasks of a startup founder is to keep her team motivated.  While what motivates people might differ based on the nature of their work e.g. sales - commission checks, engineers - freedom to solve problems and build, what demotivates people tends to be the same.  One big de-motivator for anyone working in a startup team is the founder who wants to do everything under the guise of having to do everything.  The reason this is demotivating is ... Read more

What I Read When I Don’t Want to Code

I'm in this funk wherein I can't code at home. I just can't. I feel like my head needs a break from all the semi-colons. And anyway, I'm supposed to be on vacation this week, but yet I don't want my brain to turn into mush. I'm spending some time in Silicon Valley after all, and it's hard not to be pumped about python and productivity and passion and pitches when one is in the area.   So this time, I thought I'd share ... Read more

Trying Moments of 2012

It's been a interesting year for me, yes I know everyone says that.  Every year is filled with ups and downs but this one in particular had some unexpected moments that hit me pretty hard - literally!  I'm only sharing some of these precious moments because it's easy to glamorize someone else's life, and its also hard to know how people get through trying times. The first trying moment happened in London. You can read the gory details here, but in an effort ... Read more

Gauging Personality of a Programmer

Technical recruiting isn't just about finding skills and a culture fit.  One of the issues is that those who are recruiting need to know what the nature of the position is they are filling, and as they screen candidates be able to convey what the position requires to a candidate.  This is something that isn't done as much today, and as a result it is one of the primary reasons people burnout or become demotivated.  Every position has a component of ... Read more

Golden Nuggets from Programming Gurus

In my last article, I wrote about lessons I learned as a young woman in my first engineering job fresh from undergrad. I thought this week, why not write about things I learned from the exact opposite of that -- golden nuggets from programmer friends who have been in the industry for a while. Now, these are just tidbits that stuck to me during Friday night dates, or in conversations at lunch, even over gossip sessions via Skype, but I ... Read more

How to Build a Self-Sufficient Team

Its easy as a founder to just do everything, especially if you're technical. But just because you can do everything doesn't mean you should. Doing everything not only leads to burning out, but it can also be very de-motivating for your team, especially if you are doing tasks you had hired them to do!  Its a sign to them that you not only don't trust them, but you think they're incapable of functioning without you. Delegation is hard, but its necessary for ... Read more

Software Engineering: Another Form of Self Expression

Initially I didn't think of programming as a way of expressing myself. The best analogy I can think of is learning to program is similar to learning how to write. In the beginning you learn the letters, then the words, then after reading and studying others’ work you begin to write on your own. Why do I enjoy Software Engineering? Besides being a fabulous, well paying, career it’s a constant exercise in problem solving. Software Engineering is incredibly rewarding, particularly when you get ... Read more

You Will Be Different and That’s OK

I was at a party my Filipino family friends threw for my twenty-first birthday last weekendwhen one of the younger kids asked me how I became such a young successful professional. The term “successful” is debatable, I would say, but I nevertheless decided to write down some of the lessons I’ve learned along the way in hopes that someone else will at least find them a bit helpful. Thus, if you are interested in the random musings and observations of a ... Read more