Lesley Cordero is currently a Staff Software Engineer, Tech Lead at The New York Times. She has spent the majority of her career on edtech teams as an engineer, including Google for Education and other edtech startups.
In her current role, she has focused on observability, building excellent teams, and reliability management by setting org-wide vision & strategy, improving on-call processes, introducing chaos engineering, and cultivating culture that builds with the most vulnerable employees in mind first. She shows care for others by holding them accountable to the best versions of themselves – and by buying them the occasional bubble tea.
Psychological safety is particularly important for teams that manage service reliability. The vulnerability that comes with mitigating failures in production requires principles of trust, transparency, and inclusion that can only come from cultures that minimize harm and enable empowerment.
Cultivating this kind of culture requires leaders to think proactively about how to build processes and systems that enable teams to be healthy, productive, and effective, while being adequately prepared for situations when failure inevitably happens.
We’ll review the cultural consequences of chronic issues and the strategies we can use as leaders to align with our shared goal of building excellent teams. We’ll touch upon themes of privilege, power, and accountability.