1. Library
  2. Podcasts
  3. Developer Love
  4. Ep. #14, Community Transparency with Tracy Lee of This Dot Labs
Developer Love
38 MIN

Ep. #14, Community Transparency with Tracy Lee of This Dot Labs

light mode
about the episode

In episode 14 of Developer Love, Patrick speaks with Tracy Lee of This Dot Labs. They discuss the prevalence of online events, nurturing communities within remote orgs, and providing opportunities for underrepresented groups in tech.

Tracy Lee is the CEO and Co-Founder of This Dot Labs, a keynote speaker and community leader, and a Google Developer Expert for Angular. She is also a host on the Modern Web podcast.


Patrick Woods: Tracy, thanks so much for coming on the show today.

Really excited to have this conversation.

Why don't we start out by you sharing a little bit about who you are and what you're working on?

Tracy Lee: Sure. My name's Tracy. I am the Co-founder of a company called This Dot Labs.

You can find me on Twitter @LadyLeet.

I'm also a Google Developer Expert for Angular and the web, I'm on the RxJS Core Team.

I'm a Microsoft MVP and I love doing community-related things.

So whether it's being a host on the Modern Web Podcast or a Google Developer Group organizer, always happy to chat about fun things in tech.

Patrick: Yeah. It seems like you're involved with tons of developer communities online, offline around the world.

I'm curious, how has community for you change during COVID over the past several months?

Tracy: It's been interesting. I think everybody last year, once everything hit kind of didn't know what to do.

And so everybody was scrambling and trying to figure out what to do for the year.

And we made it through the year, but this year I feel like coming into 2021, people were like, OK, you know what?

This is what it's going to be like this year, I have a plan, and now I feel like people are going to be much more organized and figure out like how to live through 2021.

What I found interesting is the online kind of events.

So usually at conferences, speakers are gathering and talking and sharing ideas and that's kind of where all your friends are.

But since we didn't have that a lot this year, we ended up hosting this thing called a GraphQL Contributor Days that we do.

And we hosted it towards the end of last year.

And what we realized is that people really appreciated the format because that was like the first time everybody was able to really gather around and just talk.

Like even if you're in the community, like you don't get that kind of like speaker time, collaboration, whatever it is.

So it was really useful. And we plan on doing a lot of them again this year.

We're doing Vue Contributor Days, React Contributor Days, Angular Contributor Days, again, just to bring people together to have the conversations that we miss so much.

Patrick: Would love to hear more about the specifics of the format that you've found to work really well in an online setting.

Tracy: Honestly, for these types of things, I think it's just saying, "Hey, you know what? We're going to create an agenda of something."

We typically meet for about three hours, and I've been planning Angular and Vue Contributor Days just today actually.

And there's so much to talk about. Right?

So really a three-hour block seems just so short 'cause you talk about things like maybe you want to talk about state management server side rendering, OK, that's half an hour.

You want to talk about contributing upstream, OK, that's another half hour, and we just leave it to open forum discussion.

So we invite all the contributors within the community and they come and they kind of participate as panelists on this event, but we also open up to the community to make it more inclusive.

So anybody can listen in and join on. And it's a great way to kind of see how communities work and are formed.

So for people curious about Core Teams or what they're talking about or like what's the new, new, what's on people's minds, this is a really great place to go.

Patrick: Yeah. That's really interesting.

How do you blend the sort of presentation content with, do you have any mixer content or the ways for people to connect with each other or is it mostly sort of panels and round tables and stuff like that?

Tracy: It's just panels and round tables.

It's like stick 40 people on a call, present a topic and then somebody will be like, "Yes!"

Like GraphQL community right now is very excited about things like Federation and Streams.

And so people are just like, "Yes, yes, yes!"

And then the conversation gets going and you kind of get to hear from the people who are actually working on these things, like what on earth are the updates?

Patrick: Cool. So it sounds like a conference call type of vibe, like an open question where people can ask questions like anybody from the audience, is that kind of the feel or is it more--?

Tracy: Yeah.

Patrick: OK. That's really cool.

How have you seen those events support the contributor or pipeline where you'd have the anecdotes of that?

Are those events turning into sort of early touch points for people who then become more engaged in the community-- starts to do more contribution, etc.?

Tracy: Yes. That's exactly the point of this.

We've been hosting Contributor Days types of events for years, and we usually do them in person because it's obviously it used to be more engaging in person.

Right now it's engaging online because everybody's online.

But when we've done it in the past, maybe somebody from let's say the Angular Core Team will say, "Hey, yeah, somebody wants to build this tool, we don't have the time to build it."

And usually there'll be somebody from a company.

A great example is one company that was there in previous ones was Wrangle, and they said, "Oh, OK, we'll build this thing."

So that's kind of an interesting way for I think generally people to get involved, but also companies to get involved in open source as well, if you're just there and you're listening.

I think opening it as an open forum for everybody to join really allows these core contributors who are busy doing their own thing, busy working on the platform, to see the people who actually are interested.

So a lot of really cool things have come from it.

At one of the last Angular Contributor days as well, there was a community group that was formed, and they started working on some things that the community wanted.

I can't remember 'cause it was so long ago.

But those types of things I think are the things that excite me the most, right?

Like my belief is always with community, i f you put enough smart people in a room, cool things will happen.

Patrick: Yeah. I love that and I agree.

And it makes me wonder, you're involved with a lot of different types of communities.

And what keeps you coming back to the world of community and open source and things along these lines?

Tracy: I've always been about bringing people together.

My last company was like that. Right?

I did a startup and the whole idea was bringing people together through food.

And so when I started learning JavaScript and I got into this community, initially it wasn't about starting a consultancy.

It was just like, how do I bring more JavaScript people together and get everybody to learn from each other?

I just can't help it. Like my last company was very events-focused.

I was like, "I will never do events again. Like I hate events, I'm done."

We were doing like, I don't know, 20 events a week or something crazy like that.

Then I started hosting JavaScript meetups, and here I am again.

And so like it's different.

Like I love it but at some point in time for my last startup, I got a little burnt out after like eight years of doing it nonstop.

Patrick: Yeah, that's a long run especially when you're doing a ton of live events.

Tracy: Yeah, we were global, so it was like we were in 250 different cities.

So we weren't actually running the events physically but having to manage all those events at once was kind of a lot.

Patrick: Are there any lessons learned or any sort of principles or ideas you're pulling from that experience to your events and your community-building today?


One of the things I've learned from building community generally is that you have to be transparent, right? And if the community is saying something, you better address it and not just ignore that something's happening.

So we've seen this with the Node Community for example, right?

Like some stuff went down a few years ago, there was kind of this like split between the Node Community, and it was difficult for Node Foundation, for example, to like address it in a way that made the community happy.

But if they had done a better job, maybe some of this stuff wouldn't have happened.

Angular Community last year had some snafus, right?

And one of the things was just you people speak up when they don't feel like they're getting an answer. So I think as community leaders, making sure that you address things that are happening with people and speak to it, even if it's not a topic you really want to talk about is going to just like create less civil unrest, if you will, within your communities.

Patrick: And what are some tools or tactics you've seen work really well in terms of staying abreast of those types of conversations and knowing when to weight in versus when to let the conversation sort of sort itself out?

Tracy: I think it's hard, and a tool like you guys are building would be amazing for that. Right?

'Cause you can hear a sentiment.

I think there's a lot of tools for marketers, like let's say Burger King is probably using some sort of like marketing sentiment analysis tool or something like that.

So something early on that detects that happening, 'cause I think it's really difficult as you grow as a community, like does this thing matter to people?

Like why for example should we as a community focus on this one person that's so loud? Right?

But like if you don't do those things, you really do see the ripple effects with your community.

And if you don't address it and you're just like, oh no, that's not an issue, rumors start spreading and social media these days is like a double-edged sword.

So I don't know. We do our best, I guess. Right?

Patrick: Yeah, of course. It seems like you do a lot of things.

You've got event, you're on various podcasts and you stream a lot, and you also have a consulting business.

I'm curious, how do you architect your time between all of those different areas?

Tracy: I ask myself the same question all the time, but one of the things that I care a lot about is work-life balance.

And I think as developers and especially in the developer community, it's like, well, our work and our play are one and the same.

Right. So you hear about a lot of developers burning out because you're always their computer, et cetera, et cetera.

But I usually work and then I like turn off my computer and don't revisit it again.

So that for me works really well.

My husband tells me though, he's like, "You need to balance your time a little bit better with work."

I'm like, dude. I'm trying.

Like the amount of effort I put in to try to do this. Right?

But I think blocking off time as well, right?

Like today, for example, like was it a great idea that I'm doing four events today?

Like is that the smartest d ecision I've ever made in my life? Probably not, but I'm having a lot of fun today.

So amazing. I think it comes in waves, and I always look at my energy levels, right?

Like if I am stoked about something, I better maximize that energy and just run with it for as long as I can.

Because once I go down and I don't have that energy anymore, it's going to be really hard for me to actually put in the effort to be able to accomplish whatever the hell I want to accomplish within that task.

So that's kind of how I deal with it. My calendar is a little bit crazy.

A lot of people say don't make it to-do lists 'cause you'll never get to them, but like make it to-do lists by putting it on your calendar.

So I try to do that.

Patrick: I'm always impressed when people are able to move the ball forward on so many different areas.

It's very, very impressive.

So thinking about the consulting business, I know that onboarding junior hires, your junior developers is a big part of your focus.

I'm very interested to hear what you've learned from that process, and what's working, what's not and how other companies should think about attracting and engaging and onboarding developers who this might be their first developer role.

Tracy: I think that a lot of startups are starting to think about diversity first, which I think is really healthy.

So that's kind of cool to watch kind of people not just say, "OK, hey, we're going to hire the best of the best" or just do it.

But like people are being much more intentional about how they build their development teams.

And I think that's really healthy. There's so many small, different little things that happen within development teams that you don't really think about.

Right? Like for example, I was meeting with an engineering manager and he's like, "Yeah, we want somebody who's like a good team fit.

Like he'll go out with us for happy hour once a week and have some beers,"

And I'm thinking, "Well, yeah, that sounds great.

And it sounds like you have a great culture, but it's also, is it the most inclusive culture?"

Because do women like to drink beer? I'm not that big of a fan of beer. Right?

So going out having beers with a bunch of guys like it's not that exciting to me.

But if they have a female on the team, like it's actually kind of surprising to me how different the tone is when you have diversity on your teams.

Like I wish I had more time to really sit with my thoughts on this because I could probably pick out some reasons why I feel this way, but you can see the dynamic change. Right?

So one thing that we have also done is since we have thought about this a lot is start this thing called the PAM stack.

So if you go to thepamstack.com, you'll see this thing that we fit together.

It's all about process obstructions and mentorships. So when you think about building inclusive teams, junior developers included and everything like that, you do have to change how things are done right now but not thinking about how you need to be the best developer ever.

But senior developers, their role kind of changes to not be the best code or committing the most lines of code, but their role changes to being the best mentor possible.

Because I think if you can 10x your people on the team, right--B ecome a 10x mentor versus be a 10x developer, then all of a sudden your team becomes more healthy.

And the other great part about employing these practices, so when we think about junior developers, you talk about how to make successful on your team, right?

The stuff you do to make your team healthy for junior developers actually helps everybody.

Like for example, documentation is a big one.

You don't have documentation, so only one person can do the deploy, right?

Or like you have to wait for X, right? And that stresses everybody out.

But if you have documentation on how to do deployment, then that person that usually does it can take a holiday, or anybody can do it, or they're not waking up at midnight to do X, Y and Z.

So I love the concepts that we've formed from the PAM stack, and hopefully that helps people when they think about onboarding junior developers.

Patrick: That's super interesting.

How did you come up with the PAM stack? What was the genesis of that concept?

Tracy: This actually started internally.

It was myself and Rob Ocel, who's one of the tech leads here at This Dot, and his experience in development teams and seeing those people stressed out, right?

Like, "Man, John, the one guy who is the only one that can fix this one problem, everybody goes to John."

But like, is that healthy?

Not really, like when's John ever going to get promoted?

When's John ever going to get a holiday? Right?

But these types of concepts of making sure that John is not the only one to be able to do things are again the things that help everybody on the team. Right?

I think the goal really is how do you make development and development teams like not a stressful place to be?

Well, if you write a bunch of stuff down and you have enough process in place, then everyone can kind of chill because you kind of the process sets you free versus like I have to keep everything in my head and make sure that I'm doing it because I'm the developer to do it, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

So that type of thing that Rob has seen in his career as a developer and on developer teams of how to improve that type of team and make healthier development teams, paired with like my passion for helping underrepresented folks in tech, he has that passion as well.

But that's kind of what formed the PAM stack for us.

Patrick: That's super cool.

So if you were speaking to a room full of early-stage founders, let's say, and they're about to ramp their engineering teams, and they wanted to keep an eye on diversity and onboarding junior talent--

What would you say are the top two or three or four principles or ideas or concepts they should keep in mind as they try and build a culture around those types of practices?

Tracy: Sure. I have a lot of talks about this on the internet as well.

And I have so many different little tidbits, but I would say definitely start early, because the sooner you can get somebody who looks like the other person on the team, the better it's going to be.

I would also say that a lot of teams think, "Oh, we can't handle junior developers right now. We don't have the time and energy to do so."

And you shouldn't think about it like that because what you're creating is also an unhealthy workplace for the senior developers as well, right?

Because if only senior developers can do the job, that means that you don't have the right processes in place.

That means maybe you're not even using the right abstractions to be able to make it more approachable to people.

That means that hiring is going to be more difficult because you need more of those like rockstar developers to be able to contribute to that code base. Right?

But if you make everything more approachable, it just happens to be that if you make things more approachable, anyone from all levels can contribute.

Plus again, the stress of the senior developers decreases a lot because they don't have to rely on again, their brains, they can just rely on the documentation that's been created.

Patrick: Yeah. That all makes a ton of sense.

So as you think about building culture internally for This Dot, what are some ways that you make sure that culture is a place where developers want to work?

Tracy: Well, we've been thinking a lot about this as well.

Our team has grown to 50 people now, and through that, team of 30, team of 10, team of 50-- Very different dynamics. Right?

So I think one thing for us, we have just started to implement this week is making KPIs for us, for employee happiness, right?

Like we've been sending out like, hey, how are you? How are you feeling one through four?

I just saw a tweet actually today that, I think it was Jamon on Twitter, he said that he asks his developers all the time on a scale of one to 10, how stressed out are you?

That's also a great factor. But if you're able to chart those results over time, right?

Maybe like in a given week, who cares? And you might not buy into that in the beginning.

It's like, OK, whatever. Why do I need to know?

But it actually does let people stop and think about, hey, how do I actually feel?

Do I feel crappy? Do I feel fine? Am I stressed out? Am I not? Right?

And again, over time, if you look at that over months, you can actually start to see like, OK, do we have a healthy organization or not?

So that's one big thing. I think another thing is just like listening.

I think that's the biggest thing.

Like if you don't listen and try to take action and make your people feel heard, right?

This is community and this is also, I guess, employees, then things won't work out so well 'cause people will be unhappy.

We're definitely not perfect, but we try to address those things.

And I think as a management team, like we're a little bit more sensitive to people being happy as much as they can.

That doesn't mean give everybody everything they want, but that does mean like talk about the things that people care about.

Patrick: What are some tactical ways you and the team implement practices and processes around that listening?

How do you do that practically?

Tracy: Well, we just implemented this thing called office vibe.

So that's kind of like asking, hey, how are you doing? Are you happy?

Do you have any comments for us? But it also helps you manage one-on-ones as well.

So again, just I'm trying to figure out as our organization grows, let's say to 100 people, like can we somehow track in a better way through metrics like how people are feeling generally?

So those are things we do, but I think leaving the door open, we're a remote-first company.

I told myself I would never go into an office again or have to go into office again.

So I think like developing remote culture as well, right?

Like happy hours or getting to know each other.

We have these things called water coolers every week.

As our team has grown, one thing that we've changed is there's too many people on the big water cooler.

So like let's do mini-water watercolors of five people.

And then basically we rotate through those groups every week so that everybody gets to meet everybody.

But it's just 15 minutes, but you get to like 15 minutes to hang out. I have two cats, I just got two cats.

So like, and everybody has like kids within the organization.

So like we talk about poop a lot. At least in the conversations I'm in.

Patrick: So it sounds like in terms of building a great culture, a culture that developers want to work in, it seems like there's a blend of social interactions that you're able to facilitate, there's a culture of listening and culture of introspection.

Is there anything else that you would include in that list?

Tracy: I think those are the things that matter the most to us.

I also, I think for us, like some people are like, yeah, I do consulting, whatever, great, fine.

But for myself personally, and I think for a lot of other people on our team, we really care about our mission of like helping underrepresented minorities in tech.

So we spend a lot of time in that and try to provide opportunities for underrepresented folks in tech as much as we can.

And I think giving our team the opportunities to be exposed to those types of things, or even being able to just interact with the JavaScript ecosystem, right?

Are kind of things that we do to try to make work not just work, but work a place where you're kind of like growing yourself holistically as well as a developer.

So that type of stuff is fun.

Like I'm very YOLO mentality and I think sometimes I scare some of the developer's like, "Oh my God, you want me to do what? Give a talk? Oh my God! I'm going to die."

I'm like, "It'll be fun. Let's do it."

So it's a balance of that, but I think challenging, right?

Like I think growth is a really important thing as well.

I think a lot of developers leave because they don't experience career growth, so they're looking for more growth.

So I'm constantly being able to challenge our team members in what they're doing and making sure they feel a little bit of that pain.

So it's kind of a balance, right?

Like how do you help people grow in a way that doesn't stress them the hell out, balancing that with like how do you help people to grow so that they do feel some of that tension so that they are growing as individuals?

And that's a hard balance sometimes.

Patrick: Yeah, how do you navigate that? How do you find that balance?

I realize it's probably very intuitive, but I'm curious if there's any frameworks you apply to understand when to push a little bit, when to pull back.

Tracy: I think it is unfortunately an intuitive thing.

I think it's having the right engineering leadership in place to ask those questions, because like how can you tell? Right?

I think this whole like implementing office five to ask people like, hey, how do you feel? How stressed are you?

Those types of things help out.

But I think it's also creating a culture where people can have open dialogues, or encouraging people to be more open.

So I don't know, maybe we're too open and we're too like-- sometimes I'm like, "Dude, are we too sensitive?"

Like we spend a lot of time like trying to make our people happy.

And I'm like, it's a lot. But it's the thing that matters, right?

Like it's really the thing that matters within our org.

Patrick: Yeah. It's the work that enables the work.

Tracy: Yes. Yes, absolutely. So that's basically where I spend most of my time hanging out.

Patrick: I know diversity is important for you and the team and the company.

It reminds me of one challenge that sort of has become a meme, I would say in tech world, which is I'd like to hire more people from diverse backgrounds but it's a pipeline problem.

And I just don't have enough people applying. What would you say to that?

And then also, how do you ensure that your pipeline is full of all types of candidates?

Tracy: Sure. There's a lot of case studies out there of companies that have done it really well.

I think one of them that I can think off the top of my head was Pinterest. Right?

Some other companies have done things where anybody who's being interviewed has to be interviewed by somebody from an underrepresented group. Right?

So that helps 'cause it's like, "Oh, there's people like me."

There's not just like one type of person.

I think another thing is the idea that there is not a good-enough pipeline.

Like while that is very true, there are other avenues.

So if you look at the numbers, if you look at like underrepresented folks coming out of traditional colleges versus coming out of boot camps, right?

The numbers are significantly higher from an underrepresented category with boot camps.

So I think finding the right places to recruit is probably what you also have to look for, and also being intentional.

Like it's much easier to hire when you're not stressed out about like why we need to hire this person right now to find the right person from an underrepresented group, versus if you're like, OK, we need to hire somebody literally right now. Right?

Like you're going to basically hire the next person who meets those qualifications.

I think another thing is making sure you have like--

OK, so my last company, we were hiring so fast, like 20 people a week. OK?

It was absolutely crazy.

Patrick: Wow!

Tracy: Yeah. And our culture got away from us.

So you can imagine a bunch of like twenty-something women, and that's basically who we are. It was mostly a female company.

And what ended up happening actually is that in the office, there became this like mean-girls environment where there was this group of girls where they were like, oh, you can't sit with us, ha ha, we think it's so funny.

Like kind of, eh, and I'm like, dude, that's why I quit corporate world because I didn't want this crap but now it's in my company.

So I think like making sure that whoever, and this was my fault because I just kind of let whomever hire whomever. Right?

So I'm a little careful about it right now.

Like I participate in all the interviews and everything like that. Is that scalable?

I was talking to another person about the fact that I'm like, OK what?

Even at 100 people, like I'm still going to do the interviewing, I don't care. Right? 'Cause I care about that.

But he said as long as you develop good culture with the engineering leadership, and the engineer leadership are the right people, then it'll be much easier to hire and keep that culture without me as a CEO having to be directly involved all the time.

So I think those types of things are really important. Junior developers as well.

I think having junior developers interview seniors or all levels, like they just have such a different perspective on that hire.

And that's really healthy too.

Patrick: What do you think is the secret to building things developers love?

Tracy: I think that's asking for feedback and just following those influencers, right?

Like I think as people, we tend to look at the things that aren't working or our problem points.

So we're always looking for like the things that we don't have or things that we, like let's say you have a product and your target customers are startups, or your target customers aren't startups but you basically have a bunch of startups using your product, a lot of those companies will say, oh man, we want to get into the enterprise space.

And they spend all their time and energy trying to get enterprise customers, whereas they have all these customers that are startups.

So I think like doubling down, right?

Like, so when you see things, if you're building products for developers and you see things that are working, focus on those things that are working and double down on those things versus looking for like the bright, shiny things that maybe your advisors are telling you should do because like the metrics are right in front of you, right?

Like do what your customers are telling you to do.

Patrick: Reminds me of, I interviewed David Heinemeier Hansson a few weeks ago, and he talks a lot about knowing when to zoom out versus zoom out and have a laser focus.

This just reminds me of that observation that he made.

So this podcast is called "Developer Love."

I always ask people, what's one thing you're loving right now?

Tracy: One thing I'm loving right now is watching these new frameworks come to light.

So JavaScript World that I live in is kind of funny because first a few years ago, five years ago or so, we were complaining like, oh God, another JavaScript framework!

Why can't JavaScripts slow down? Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Now that the JavaScript ecosystem has kind of picked the top three, right?

Like Angular, Vue and React, now they're bored. And they're like, wow! I'm so bored.

I'm like, guys don't you like it that that's stable?

Well, now you're with these like full stack JavaScript frameworks come out, so things like Blitz JS and Redwood JS, I'm getting pretty stoked on.

A lot of it comes from the rails mentality.

And it's opinionated in a stack sense.

So it's like, OK, you use Redwood and you're going to be using React JS, for example.

You're going to be using Netlify for deployment. Right?

I'm seeing a lot of excitement around there and a lot of like innovative things happening.

So that's kind of the stuff I can get excited about right now.

Patrick: Yeah. So how do you assess the new frameworks that are coming out, the hot new thing?

You're thinking with your consulting hat on, how do you assess which tools to deploy when, when to have the team learn the new stacks?

I'm just curious about how you navigate the old versus the new.

Tracy: Generally as a team I think we like to play. So we have a lot of events.

We do a lot of trainings and we generally like to teach developers.

So we're always poking around in the new, exciting things and everybody's always doing like random side projects here and there.

I think when you think about adoption generally, right?

Like if you look at Vue, for example, a few years ago, we were like this report came out and Vue had X amount of stars and Vue was going to take over the universe, right?

It was like this big thing. And what we saw in reality was Vue being used for a lot of greenfield apps, Vue not really being adopted in a lot of enterprise areas at least from what we could have seen. Right?

And like I think that like you look at the JavaScript ecosystem and you look at the bright and shiny, but in reality, like a lot of the bright and shiny is not adopted by enterprise for like one to three years plus, right?

So it's still bright and shiny for them, versus like startups, right?

If you're starting from the ground up, you can kind of choose whatever you want.

And this is kind of something as well that I've been thinking about and something that we'll be addressing this year with This Dot is the bright and shiny stuff is cool. Right?

It's like, oh, Netlify, oh, Gatsby, super amazing.

But really what is missing out there from a content perspective is how the heck do you integrate this stuff into enterprise ecosystems?

And nobody's talking about that.

And I think a lot of people are like, stop giving me just another crud app. I don't care.

How is this actually useful for me at work? And that I think is kind of interesting.

Patrick: What do you think are some of the differences between shiny Startup Land and Enterprise Land as you think about educating and sharing content and closing that gap, what are the sort of the top things you think are most important?

Tracy: I think a startup is always like, OK, this is the cool hippest newest thing, we're Greenfield, we could just do it.

So you don't have to take so many other things into consideration, right?

Like when you go enterprise, you have to think about so many other things and also it's at a different scale.

So a team of five people, four people, two people, you can, right?

Like can navigate things so much differently than a team of 50.

So I'll make the sort of like a traditional example, like a lot of startups use React, right?

Like you see a lot of startups going to React, and you know why is that? It's definitely a very popular, right?

But then in Enterprise Land, you see a lot of people using Angular.

A lot of people use React as well, but the reason why Angular is useful for like let's say a team of 50 to 200 developers is because you have this convention over configuration.

So decisions are made for you. There's good documentation.

There's one way to do it, and that's the right way.

So the productivity level of being able to use something that's convention-based is much easier and faster actually for an enterprise to use versus for a startup, right?

Like they don't have to make those considerations.

So I would say that's probably the biggest thing that I see.

Patrick: So the scope of this answer can be as broad or as narrow as you like, whether it's personal, professional or your choice, but what's been your proudest moment.

Tracy: My proudest moment that I can think about is I learned how to shave my cats butt this weekend.

That's the one proud moment. I think one thing that I get excited about again is helping women in tech, right?

So we had this apprentice recently, and she was amazing, great communicator, somebody did our code exercise who was external from our organization and was like, if you don't hire her, I'm hiring her literally now.

And I was like, OK, we obviously have to hire this person then. Right? Like we can't say no to this person. And she's amazing.

But I think junior developers always struggle with self-confidence, like how am I doing? Am I doing OK? Should I speak up?

Again, I haven't had enough time and energy to like sit down and really think about like separating out like, is it a gender thing?

Is it a junior developer thing? Is it a human thing? Right?

But like some things do you think about like she was like, our team doesn't really like hang out outside of the stand-ups, like we should do a happy hour or something like that.

And she needed the confidence to be able to suggest those types of things, or like, hey, we should do this.

But as a woman or maybe even as a junior developer, she was like, well, if I start suggesting all these things, maybe that's more HR's role and maybe they're not going to respect me because I'm making these suggestions and they don't think I'm a real developer.

Or like, oh, can I help suggest fixing this process here or are they going to shoehorn me into being a project manager whereas I want to have a career developer path?

So working with her through all these questions that she had and the sort of like insecurity she had about where she was and what her position was, after she felt confident ad after we had these discussions with her, we saw her performance just like skyrocket.

So she was able to basically apply that to her success, and all she needed was somebody just to talk to her through these things, like this is completely normal, yes, you should do this.

So I love seeing those types of things. I really let other people be successful.

Patrick: It's a great proud moment.

Tracy: It really was.

Patrick: That and the cat's butt. Those are perfectly pair.

Well, Tracy, thank you so much for the conversation today.

You've been very generous with your time.

If folks wanted to learn more about you and what you're working on, where should they find more about you online?

Tracy: You can find me on Twitter @LadyLeet.

We also have a YouTube channel called This Dot Media where we have a lot of really cool shows.

So very recently we just launched this show called "JavaScript After Dark". It's kind of like "Jimmy Kimmel / Saturday Night Live" meets developers, but not as cool.

So, but we just want to like sticks, hang out and meet a bunch of really cool developers and watch us do silly things.

It's a great place to be. So yeah, I'm always happy to talk to people about different things.

If you're hiring JavaScript consultants, obviously definitely check us out. If you are looking for a job, we're always hiring.

So again, feel free to drop me a line if you like. And yeah, I hope to see you online.

Patrick: Awesome. Thanks again.

Tracy: Thank you.