Hi, nice to meet you. My name is Jean-Michel. I've worked in tech for 30 years, building software and then building teams and companies. My mission is to help companies and leaders with mentoring from a fellow nerd who's built companies, products, and platforms at scale.
As an engineer building a company, you see things that others don't. You yearn to automate the mundate, invest in both products and platforms. Create a culture of builders by knowing how to lead creatives and engineers. Create environments where they thrive, and turn that energy into great products.
I'm writing to shine a light on patterns that appear in all our companies and technical teams, dig into the nuances, and leave you with concrete tools for building better teams.
Some of what I write isn't new, and you just need reminders on how to apply with your teams. But some of this is counter-intuitive and opposite of what the main-stream is telling us. I hope you enjoy!
I'm a software developer and have built and led teams of 1 to 3,000. I was a founding member on the Eclipse platform and open source team, and then led and scaled the engineering orgs as CTO and VPE at Atlassian and Shopify from hundreds to several thousand developers.
Community and education are big passions and co-founded Canadian Tech @ Scale which brings together tech leaders from across Canada and founded DevDegree.ca which is an accrediated work-integrated computer science degree unlike any other.
Outside of writing, I'm also working as an LP and advisor with Generation IM and advisor/board with a few companies: BuildKite, AlayaCare, Avant Arte, DreamTeam, BenchSci, OpsLevel, Search.io (acquired by Algolia), Govalo.
I'm highly influenced by the book Drawing from the right side of the brain. While drawing was never my profession, learning to draw helped me see things that others around me often didn't see. The book was also an inspiration for the name of my website.
Here are some recent interviews and talks that can help you get to know me: