“The Making of a Manager”, a book I highly recommend and some of my favorite parts

There are thousands of books on how to be a manager and I’m sure many of them are very good. I just finished reading The Making of a Manager by Julie Zhou. I loved the book and highly recommend to new managers, not so new managers and people who might want to be managers one day.

TheMakingofaManager

Many management books out there give you a lot of theoretical advice on how to be a manager or just advice that’s not applicable to real world. What I loved about Julie’s book is that it’s full of very practical advice and tips. You can take it and use today. I liked that Julie wasn’t afraid to share that she was scared many times, that she wasn’t sure if she made the right decision and that’s it’s OK (and actually beneficial as that’s how we grow) to make mistakes because we are all humans. Reading the book I said many times “oh yes, that’s how I felt” and “oh, and I was in exact the same situation”. This kind of connection makes this an excellent book that I highly encourage to read. Seeing how the Julie dealt with various challenges and grew to be VP of Design at Facebook, is a great learning experience.

Continue reading ““The Making of a Manager”, a book I highly recommend and some of my favorite parts”

Machine Learning, Spark, PixieDust, APIs and Postman – watch August 2019 online meetup recordings

IBM Developer SF team hosts weekly online meetups on various topics. Online events are one of the best ways to scale your Developer Relations program and reach developers anywhere, anytime and for a long time after the event.

The following online meetups we hosted in August 2019 with links to watch the recordings.  I also encourage you to join our meetup so you will always know when our online meetups are scheduled. Our meetups are hosted by the wonderful Lisa Jung 👋.

⭐️ Flying a drone with Node.Red and Watson (August 7, 2019) 

In this online meetup with Marek Sadowski developers learned:

  • How to access Watson AI services on the cloud
  • How to program a drone with Node-Red
  • How to conduct a search mission

Watch the recording 📺

Continue reading “Machine Learning, Spark, PixieDust, APIs and Postman – watch August 2019 online meetup recordings”

Applying the Fogg Behavior Model to Developer Relations

I found about the Fogg Behavior Model from #saashacker newsletter. I found this model super interesting and right away thought if it can be applied to Developer Relations.

Fogg Behavior Model Graphic 2019

First, what is the Fogg Behavior Model? You can find a detailed explanation on https://www.behaviormodel.org/. The model has three main components: Motivation, Ability and Prompts.

The model says that to influence someone to do something, you have just two levers:

  • Motivation – how much someone wants to do something
  • Ability – how easy it is to do the thing

The third component

  • Prompts – is a call to action, trigger or cue for a behavior to happen

So, could this model be applied to developers? Let’s look at each component and see how it can be applied to Developer Relations.

Motivation

So what can motivate developers? Here is a list of motivations:

  • Solving a (challenging) problem (at work or a personal project)
  • Giving back to community. For example, contributing to an open source project
  • Career growth, personal growth, learning

Ability

Ability is how easy it is to do something. I think ability has a strong connection to Developer Relations. We (Developer Advocates) always strive to make things easier for developers. A big part of this is making our documentation, tutorials, videos, guides and everything else easy to follow and complete.

In June at DevRelCon in San Francisco, Steve Pousty gave an excellent talk called The Kick Ass Curve for developer relations. I recommend you watch the talk, one of the themes from Steve’s talk was that we need to make things easier for developers so they can become successful, and fast.

Prompts

A prompt is a call to action, trigger or cue for a behavior to happen. In the context of Developer Relations, a call to action can be a hands-on workshop that a developer can attend, or an online event. It could also be a friend recommending the technology. It can also be an interesting and easy to follow step by step tutorial that you saw in an email newsletter, an interesting blog post, article or an interesting tweet. All these prompts can lead to: “hey, I want to try this”.

Summary

Looking at the Fogg Behavior Model, we want to stay above the green Action line. Staying above the line means a developer is motivated, and it is easy for her to complete something and the prompted has worked. I believe most developers are very motivated. Where we can make a bigger difference is in the Ability.  To make developers successful, we need to strive to make things easier such as produce high quality documentation.

There are probably other ways to apply this to Developer Relations (or I might be complete off, hey, who knows). Would love to know what you think, please leave any feedback in comments.

If you want to learn more about the Fogg Behavior Model, you can pre-order BJ’s forthcoming book, Tiny Habits: The Small Changes that Change Everything. For the first time ever, BJ explains the Behavior Model in depth for a global audience. tinyhabits.com/book.

Share outcomes and results, not features

I recently subscribed to #saashackers daily newsletter. Every morning you get a short SaaS growth case study in your inbox. It’s a quick 3-4 minute read that I recommend you try.

Today’s email talked about Mailchimp and how they got to $400 million in revenue from just 550 employees.

What caught my eye was this image and the text that followed:

mailchimp-saashacker
Source: #saashacker newsletter

text after the picture:

They are selling an outcome, not features.

They are selling the thing people actually want, not their software.

Whether you are a direct to consumer brand with 50,000 customers or a mommy blogger with 1,000 subscribers, you want:

  • To build relationships with your customers
  • To increase sign up (by 250%)

You don’t (necessarily) want:

  • Email templates
  • CMS integrations

Source: https://saashacker.co

And this has a very close connection to Developer Relations (or Developer Marketing).

We should be sharing outcomes and results, not features. We should be showing people how to solve problems, not our software.

I’m sure most of you know this but I think it’s worth mentioning. I personally tend to forget about this (sometimes) and also it’s much easier to talk about features than benefits.

Most of you probably also said: “wait.. this is not new at all” 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♂️

You are absolutely correct 🤩

Adam DuVander has created and shared this wonderful page: Share Knowledge, Not Features: The Secret of Marketing to Developers is to Not Use Marketing. It’s Developer Relations classic and my favorite Developer Relations resource. I highly recommend you read and bookmark this page. Adam explains that we should be sharing knowledge, not features.

So, let’s try to share outcomes, results, problem solving and knowledge, not features✌️

Learn about Quantum, Knative, Blockchain and NLP – watch July 2019 online meetup recordings

IBM Developer SF team hosts weekly online meetups on various topics. Online events are one of the best ways to scale your Developer Relations program and reach developers anywhere, anytime and for a long time after the event.

The following online meetups we hosted in July 2019 with links to watch the recordings.  I also encourage you to join our meetup so you will always know when our online meetups are scheduled. Our meetups are hosted by the wonderful Lisa Jung 👋.

⭐️ A moderator using NLP, VR and Serverless (July 10, 2019) 

In this online meetup with Upkar Lidder developers learned:

  • Natural Language Understanding: how to detect different sentiments and emotions in text sent in Slack channels
  • Visual Recognition: how to detect offensive images sent in Slack channels
  • Apache OpenWhisk: how to glue together different pieces and create a complete application

Watch the recording 📺

Continue reading “Learn about Quantum, Knative, Blockchain and NLP – watch July 2019 online meetup recordings”

SF DevRel meetup at MuleSoft – what I learned and notes

On July 29, 2019 I attended the SF DevRel meetup at MuleSoft. The meetup was held at the Salesforce Tower. Jordan Schuetz and Sabrina Marechal from MuleSoft gave an overview of MuleSoft’s Developer Relations program. The following are my notes and what I learned. Based on what I learned, MuleSoft has an excellent Developer Advocacy team and program 👏.

Note: I highlighted (bold) their best approaches, in my opinion.

Continue reading “SF DevRel meetup at MuleSoft – what I learned and notes”

Serverless Developer Summit in 10 pictures

IBM Developer SF hosted another full-day event: Serverless Developer Summit. Over 110 technologist spent a day learning about the Serverless ecosystem from 10 speakers from 10 companies.

We also tried something new at this summit (our two other summits are AI/ML summit and Blockchain summit). We hosted a hands-on workshop before the main talks. We created three self-paced serverless tutorials that people can complete in under 10 minutes. As people would come in, they would take a printed tutorial handout (two or all three of them) and go and code them. It’s a great way to get some hands-on training. We of course had Developer Advocates to answer any questions.

OK, the pictures.

serverless-dev-summit-dave
Dave Nugent is starting the summit (top). Hands-on workshop before the main talks (bottom)

Continue reading “Serverless Developer Summit in 10 pictures”

Interesting content ideas you may consider

Content is usually one of the core components of most Developer Relations programs. Technical content such as tutorials, how-to’s, articles is a great way to scale your program. Previously I shared how one piece of content can help you create more content and also where to publish content. In this blog post I will share interesting content ideas that you may consider beyond the standard tutorial or a how-to.

You will learn about the following content ideas:

  • Notes or summary from a conference, meetup
  • Event in 10 pictures
  • Links to series of articles
  • Links to previous month video recordings

Continue reading “Interesting content ideas you may consider”

Code, Content and Community

IBM Developer’s philosophy to working with developers is: Code, Content and Community.

Earlier this year I did a short presentation on this topic and how we work with developers at SFHTML 5 meetup in San Francisco. You can watch the 5-minute video below.

 

1-day developer education event: Serverless Developer Summit

IBM Developer SF is hosting another 1-day developer education event: Serverless Developer Summit.  Check out the awesome speaker lineup below, learn about the talks and register for the summit.

Serverless-all

 

We hosted two other 1-day events in May and June with huge success.  Check them out and pictures:

AI & ML Developer Summit (pictures)

Blockchain Developer Summit (pictures)