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Ask Your Developer

book cover image and link to amazon

Jeff Lawson, the visionary behind Twilio, offers a wealth of insights in his book "Ask Your Developer". As the founder of a company revolutionizing how businesses communicate, Lawson provides a unique perspective on building successful software, fostering dynamic teams, and shaping innovative company cultures.

While some of his tactics, like internal billing and outsourcing, might raise eyebrows, they offer a fascinating look into Twilio's success. At the core of the book lies a powerful message about streamlining and empowering development. Lawson's concept of a "paved path" – where robust and integrated tools provide a foundation for easy development... is highly valuable. His encouragement to "off-road" when needed, coupled with platform teams proactively seeking to reduce that need, creates a system that promotes both efficiency and innovation.

Paved vs Offroad Paths

Additionally, they discuss a platform of tools which align to make up a paved path where people can simply use the system to accomplish their tasks. They also support and encourage people to off-road when appropriate as long as they get the work done they need to accomplish. The platform teams then plan their work by evaluating and reducing the number of teams who need to off-road. This is a really great way to think about how to build a platform and how to support teams.

This book is a must-read for anyone involved in software development, as it offers actionable strategies for fostering a culture where developers thrive.

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