DeveloperWeek 2021 DeveloperWeek 2021
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PRO WORKSHOP: What Is Your Role in Building a Culture of High Performing Engineering Teams?

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DeveloperWeek PRO Stage C
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Rama Kulasekaran
UHG-Optum, Sr. Director of Engineering

Rama is a Senior Director of Engineering at Optum (United Health Group). Rama is a Developer advocate, known for being agile, approachable, mentor and coach engineering leaders and teams.

Rama is passionate about investing in a diversified team and strongly believes that contributes to high-performance teams. He is an active member of the Culture committee to improve employee engagement, and a huge proponent of Girls and Women in Tech, and Volunteer at those events.

Vidal Graupera
LinkedIn, Engineering Manager

Vidal Graupera is an experienced engineering leader. He is an Engineering Manager at LinkedIn. Previously Vidal was an Engineering Manager at Uber, Autodesk, and WalmartLabs. Vidal holds engineering degrees from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Southern CA, and also an MBA from Santa Clara University. He served in the US Navy Reserve as an Engineering Duty Officer. A son of Cuban immigrants, Vidal was born in Miami, FL.


He hosts the popular "Managers Club" website and podcast, where you will find interviews with successful engineering leaders and managers at https://www.managersclub.com


Vidal is the author of "The Software Engineering Manager Interview Guide", "Time Management for Engineering Managers Kindle Edition", "Engineering Leadership Interviews: Lessons Learned and Best Practices Gathered from Interviews with Top Engineering Leaders Around the World" and a co-author of "Pro Smartphone Cross-Platform Development: iPhone, Blackberry, Windows Mobile and Android Development and Distribution" from Apress.


Alexandra Paredes
Code Climate, VP of Engineering

Ale Paredes is the VP of engineering at Code Climate and one of the founders of Latinas in Tech NYC. She’s passionate about growing inclusive teams and fostering environments where everyone can do their best work, build resilient and scalable systems, and deliver impactful solutions.


Annie Zhou
Square, Director of Engineering, Business Platform Engineering

Annie is a product and engineering leader. She currently supports the business platform engineering group at Square. Annie’s motivation for management comes from her people-focused passion where she enjoys building high-performing teams and empowering individuals to leverage their strengths and stretch their potentials. She enjoys thinking about problems such as building cohesive teams, scaling organizations, and cultivating a collaborative and output-oriented culture. Prior to Square, she’s worked at a number of startups across a spectrum of industries from consumer products to enterprise solutions, as well as a wide variety of teams from sales to engineering.


What steps do you take in creating a diverse and Inclusive High-Performance Engineering Organization? High-performing engineering teams don't just happen. It takes conscious effort. They need these essential elements - Vision, Values, Build trust via Psychological safety:   In high performing teams, Engineers share their opinions without fear of negative consequences of self-image, and being judged. Structure and clarity: On high performing teams, each individual understands their job’s expectations, the process for fulfilling those expectations, and the consequences of their performance. Meaning and impact: High performing teams have a sense of purpose in either the work itself or the output is important for team effectiveness.Team autonomy and Effective collaboration is the secret to success of building world-class engineering teams. How do you motivate your engineering teams by creating a culture of celebrating success? We'll get to hear directly from experienced engineering leaders on these critical culture topics.