The three traits that every CTO should have are knowing how to assemble a team, being a good gambler, and knowing how to say no. Although it may seem that a CTO should always be the smartest guy in the room about everything when it comes to tech, it’s not always possible. One of the leadership qualities needed for the position is how to assemble a great team. If there’s something you don’t know, you should have someone who knows nearly everything there is to know about the subject. A good rule of thumb is to have a go-to guy for the technology you don’t know.
The choices that a CTO has to make are not always clear., but it’s important to know where to place your chips. Until we can each have our own personal fortunetellers, CTO’s will need to know how to gamble, because every choice is a bet that their placing. Know the risk and evaluate if it’s worth it or not; this goes for winning big or small. A sinking ship doesn’t need to take it’s captain either, know when it’s time to walk away and cut your loses. A paper cut heals faster than a broken back.
The final and honestly the most important skill to have is letting that harsh word of “no” be spoken at the right times. The worst thing a CTO can do is become a “yes man” to all of their colleagues. Someone who doesn’t know how to say no doesn’t know why they are saying yes. This doesn’t just apply to outside questions, a CTO must ask himself if the choices he is going to make are right. The position is really exciting, almost like being a kid in a candy store, and getting passionate about choices can cloud judgement. Remember to keep yourself grounded and know exactly why you are saying yes. Over time your opinions will be held at a much higher regard.
Contractors, are they good? bad? A necessary evil? There are obviously many different views on getting guns for hire to help with engineering projects. Management has to weigh pro’s and con’s of bringing someone in from outside the company to help solve the problems within. The struggling deadline for a project is perfect contractor bait. You need help, and there they are waiting for the call. Time to bring them up to the major league…
..or is it?
I got a chance last week to hang out with fellow developers at the AnDevCon 2013 in Boston. This was the first time for the event to be held in Boston and went pretty well. Though the hotel staff apparently wasn’t too concerned with safety (see attached pictures). It always amazes me how many other Android developers are out there and just as passionate about the platform as I am (if not more). The week on the east coast was filled with classes and keynotes that probably some of the most meaningful outside of Google I/O. There are different types of classes for everyone, it’s a shame that you have to make choices of which classes to attend and which ones to miss. This was also my first time speaking at the conference. Getting apps in cars was still the main focus, I wanted to give an overview on the state of the industry as well as giving developers a few hints on getting their apps ready for the car. I got a chance to get a little more technical with my presentation and I found it easier to talk with other developers about the subject. Read More…
The past year has thrown me into the speaking circuit and I am incredibly grateful. I’ve gotten the chance to get in front of other people in my field and teach them things about my experiences in the smart phone connectivity and infotainment space. This of course comes with more travel. I want to keep this short because I’m sure everyone has experienced these things, instead, it’s more of a quick rant. But of course you need a strong sense of sarcasm and light heartedness when reading. Enjoy, or don’t; it’s really up to you.
Well I’m heading off to Las Vegas later today to attend the 2013 CTIA conference. This will be my first time attending and I’m looking forward to checking out all the cool and nerdy things. (And who doesn’t love a conference in Vegas!?!)
And of course iI wouldn’t be able to have a successful trip unless I got a chance to flap my gums in front of people. So I will be speaking at the App Summit event going on during CTIA. I will be co-presenting with Linda Senigaglia the Senior Director of Product Marketing at Navigation Solutions. They are a division of Hertz rental cars that creates the cool navigation devices that get put in the rental cars.
The talk is entitled Auto-Mobility and it is focused on some of the new technology going into the car making it more personalized experience. I will also be going through the sort of “state of Smartphone Connectivity” in regards to infotainment.
If you are attending the event, or just happen to be living in up in Vegas this week get a hold of me!