Engineering leadership
The hard parts
You can't improve what you can't see.

Explore common patterns in technical teams, dig into the nuances, and come away with practical tools to help you make the hard decisions that build great engineering organizations and companies. And help you grow as a leader.

The Book

Well, as you can tell, it's not a book yet. But it's coming! I've decided to publish chapters as they come and bundle all this up into a book later. Send me DM with feedback or a fist pump!

Chapter 1: The problem upgrade chart

We measure our self-worth with problems going away. But what if they don't?

Chapter 2: Platform investments

How much of your r&d spend should be focused on platform work?

Chapter 3: Layerinitis

What virus infects growing engineering orgs the most?

Chapter 4: Alignment > Autonomy

What's the worst leadership advice you've ever heard?

Chapter 5: Going fast slowly

We are getting slower as we scale, how can we get back to being fast?

Chapter 6: Problem solving vs problem planning

How should product and engineering work together and plan work?

Chapter 7: Product Engineers

Guest chapter with friend Sherif about how product engineers are important to nurture and grow on your teams.

Chapter Next: Coming soon

Writing as slowly as possible...

Hi, I'm Jean-Michel

It's very nice to meet you. I'm a software developer and company builder. 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 and programming, I'm also working as an LP and advisor with Generation IM and advisor/board with a few companies: BuildKite, AlayaCare, AvantArte, DreamTeamOS, 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 appreciate the value of looking at things closely and from many angles.

Our brain jumps to conclusions, so seeing things for what they are will give you super powers in life. The book was also an inspiration for the name of my book and website.

Here are a few more articles and videos to get to know me a bit more:

  1. Ottawa Business Journal: Life after Shopify
  2. New York Times - Welcome to the bot wars
  3. Financial Post: DevDegree accelerates university co-op learning
  4. Globe and Mail: How to sustain Canadas brain drain
  5. Globe and Mail: For tech workers its about more than money
  6. Bot Devevelopers confront @jmwind
  7. Shopify: How we get shit done
  8. An insiders look at the technology that powers Shopify
  9. Sockjig: Sneaker drops, bot-protection, and landing Supreme
  10. DevDegree: A big bet on software education
  11. Alphalist podcast: Building software at scale
  12. ModernCTO: Building a product centered culture
  13. dotScale: Extensibility as a Product