Newsletter #99 : Context Switching and FLOW

April 19, 2021

CTO Academy deliver tailored leadership skills training and career development services for global tech leaders.

CTO ACADEMY  Another week, Another product launch
Another busy week for us here at CTO Academy and frankly, I’m not sure where the week went. It’s also the reason I’m running slightly late with this newsletter but you know what they say … good things come to those who wait!
The newsletter reflects some of the recent activity particularly with the launch of our Live Masterclass series where we take a deep dive into topics specifically requested by members of our community.

Sanjay opens in May with How To Build a Tech Strategy Aligned To The Business Goals.

Zoe follows up in June with The Art of Negotiation and How To Always Win:Win

Limited places with both.
We have more great topics and speakers lined up for what will become a monthly series of half day masterclasses.

Elsewhere it’s a big thank you to Mostafa for another instalment in his Accidental CTO blog and an insight to the sharp learning curve experienced in that role.

Until next time … have a great weekend and Ramadan Mubarak to those of our friends celebrating their holy month.

 ACCIDENTAL CTO The Art of Context Switching

This week we welcomed back Mostafa Khattab with the latest instalment from his Diary of an Accidental CTO blog and how he manages the Art of Context Switching …

“As a CTO there’s usually multiple projects we have to juggle with on a day-to-day basis so to be really effective you need to be able to focus and master the art of context switching ….”

Read the full blog here.

NEWS & VIEWS  Articles That Caught Our Eye This Week

A List of Great EQ Questions to Ask in Interviews… If you want stronger teams, where people work well together, embrace change and feedback, and navigate conflict more easily, then hiring for emotional intelligence is a must. When it comes to tasks and skills, you can teach just about anyone to do anything in the universe if they want to learn it. Galen Emanuele claims that emotional intelligence however, is far more difficult to teach people. One reason for that is that generally people who don’t have high emotional intelligence think that they actually do!
Don’t mind me; the Product Designer’s role in your Agile Scrum team… Strategy aims to understand or uncover a problem, and propose a solution or direction. Delivery on the other hand focuses on the manifestation of that solution, problem solving at a detail level. The skills sets within these two streams should vary, though generally skewed to functions which specialise in the given context; this is not to say there can’t or shouldn’t be crossover.
Beetle syndrome: when managers show favouritism to people like them… In the 1950s, a group of entomologists at the University of Chicago conducted a number of experiments with several species of beetle. They were trying to solve a puzzle: why is it that when two species are put together in the same environment, they never coexist for long? Sixty years later, economists George Akerlof and Pascal Michaillat decided to take this further. What shared systems entomologists and economists could possibly find? Romane Ganneval explicates the link between beetles and humans.Zero to 1: Product Fundamentals for Go-To-Market… The hardest thing about going from 0–1 is not building something, it’s getting people to care about your product. A successful go-to-market will create and amplify interest in using your product among your target customers. Without that, you don’t have a business. Merci Victoria Grace presents a brief guide to provide a concrete, human behavior-centered overview of how to build a sellable product.

BOOK OF THE WEEK  Flow : The Psychology of Optimal Experience

Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s investigations of “optimal experience” have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life. In this new edition of his groundbreaking classic work, Csikszentmihalyi demonstrates the ways this positive state can be controlled, not just left to chance. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience teaches how, by ordering the information that enters our consciousness, we can discover true happiness and greatly improve the quality of our lives.

It’s been a revelatory book to many, including for me ….

“The book focuses on ways that we can encourage flow in our lives, and also talks about the perils of over reliance on a particular flow activity – ie., the chess prodigy who is not competent in social gatherings, or the artist who only enjoys their life when painting but not outside of that activity. It is about trying to see the potential for flow in our daily lives, using it and harnessing it to achieve worthwhile goals, and encouraging flow in a multitude of mundane and transcendental activities”
 VIDEO OF THE WEEK Got a wicked problem? First, tell me how you make toast by Tom Wujec 
 MASTERCLASS SERIES Launching CTO Academy Live Masterclass Series
Pleased to report that from May we will be running a monthly live masterclass where we take a deep dive into topics requested by our community of global tech leaders.Please are limited to just 20 tech leaders per masterclass so that everyone gets the opportunity to learn, engage and share with the host and cohort.

Find out more via the links below ….

 CTO ACADEMY TRIBES And finally … group coaching is spreading

CTO Academy Tribes are spreading around the world with cohorts forming in Europe, US and Australia / NZ.

We’ve also added a 3rd tribe that aims to help Aspiring CTOs fast track their career to the top.

Have a look at the links above and/or get in touch with me direct on [email protected].

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