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Below is the video of my debut meetup talk given at the Medidata Hammersmith office who hosted the Scala Central meetup on 2nd August. The talk was titled – Learning Scala as an Engineering Manager.

The slides are here.

Below are links mentioned during the talk:

Coursera

References, Handbooks, and Cheat Sheets

Video

Article

Puzzles

All of the talks at this meetup can be watched here.

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How often do you go to conferences? Going to 2 one day conferences in a single year is my record! Although there are hundreds of tech conferences each year we often don’t get the chance to go to everyone we would like. On the positive side, most of the talks are recorded and shared online creating an opportunity for teams to watch the best talks together!

Of course, there are many benefits to attending conferences than simply watching the talks. They are a great place to network, catch up with friends and meet new ones! The live social media exchanges during the day or a particular talk can be entertaining too. You obviously miss out on the community feel by watching a talk online after the event, but the talk material is still there giving the chance to learn.

Even though talks are shared online it can be difficult to… Continue reading

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We’re all trying to improve ourselves…right? Our grand plans that the beginning of the year may already be a distant memory, but there is always time to re-focus and improve one or more areas. Harvard Business Review wrote – The 8 Self-Assessments You Need to Improve at Work This Year – that covers all different areas of work life. The assessments are in:

  1. Productivity
  2. Work/life balance
  3. Cultural skills
  4. Emotional Intelligence (2 assessments)
  5. Communication skills
  6. Finance skills
  7. Managing your boss

If you’re looking to improve an area here I’d recommend taking the time to complete some of the self-assessments, the ones I tried were fairly quick to do. You may discover areas you never thought you needed to improve on! With the results more links are given for further reading to take you to that next level!

Here’s some of my feedback…

Five important EI competencies
My scores were:
– Emotional… Continue reading

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It’s that time of year when keep-fit DVDs and weight-loss programs are everywhere we look! There is no hiding from adverts showing us how we can have a healthier lifestyle. It has been many years since I’ve made a New Year’s resolution, I cannot remember how I got on; probably not too successfully! I think making changes, or promises even, are a good idea, it’s only that this should happen throughout the year not just at the beginning.

It’s true that there’s more motivation with New Year’s as it’s seen as a new beginning for many, but rarely do we keep our resolutions. What could it be this year, get fit, read more, study a new topic, make more time for friends? Starting something is easy, it’s the continuing that is difficult. The amount of motivational blogs posted during this time is excessive, they can be de-motivational themselves, but it’s… Continue reading

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Here are a couple of resources that might be useful when transitioning from a developer role into management. I never put a plan together when I made the transition, even though I knew that management was the correct career path for me, a plan would have helped! Just visualizing progress and having more of a structured study plan can make a big difference. But, even now, as I found out, these resources are helpful for existing managers to step back and evaluate any areas that could be improved.

These resources are also be helpful if you’re unsure a management position is for you, they offer good tips to determine if the step into management is really the right one.

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Reading was never something I enjoyed growing up, I lost interest too easily and never finished any books. In my late teens I started reading horror books, I enjoyed those! At one point I got through all of James Herbert’s and most of Clive Barker’s books. I’m not sure what it was about horror books especially, the suspense I guess and…ok…I enjoyed the gore too!!

When it came to technical books though I found it harder, they are not typically books you can read cover to cover, though I did give it a go! Some technical books are thick enough to take up the whole shelf on their own so a better strategy was to pick sections that interested me to study. The real value was putting it into practice, which is difficult for bedtime reading! But I got through books on Java and design patterns that turned me into… Continue reading