Someone observed to me recently that there are a lot of new EA organizations whose founders don't have much experience building teams and could benefit from advice from someone further along in the scaling process. Is this you, or someone you know? If so, I'd be interested in talking about your management/org-building challenges :) You can reach out through the forum's messaging feature or email me (ben dot s dot kuhn at the most common email address suffix).

About me / credentials: I'm the CTO of Wave, a startup building financial infrastructure for unbanked people in sub-Saharan Africa. I joined as an engineer in the very early days (employee #6), became CTO in 2019, and subsequently grew the engineering team from ~2 to 70+ engineers while the company overall scaled to ~2k people. Along the way I had to address a large number of different team-scaling problems, both within engineering and across the rest of Wave. I also write a blog with some advice posts that people have found useful.

Example areas I might have useful input on:

  • Hiring: clarifying roles, writing job descriptions, developing interview loops, executing hiring processes, headcount planning...
  • People management: coaching, feedback, handling unhappy or underperforming people, designing processes for things like performance reviews
  • Organizational structure: grouping people into teams, figuring out good boundaries between teams, adding management layers

About you: a leader at an organization that's experiencing (or about to experience) a bunch of growth, and could use advice on how to navigate the scaling problems that come with that.

Structure: pretty uncertain since I've never done this before, but I'm thinking some sort of biweekly or weekly checkin (after an initial convo to determine fit—I'll be doing this on a volunteer basis with a smallish chunk of time, which means I may need to prioritize folks based on where I feel the most useful).

Disclaimer: this is an experiment—I've never done this before, and giving good advice is hard, so I can't guarantee that I'll be useful :)

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[anonymous]1y19
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Hey Ben, first I want to thank you so much for being willing to try this out. This sounds like an extremely valuable experiment!

Second: I'd be super keen to see a follow-up post  to hear how the experiment went, if there were any common/recurring themes/blindspots for the people you talked to as well as any other pieces of advice after trying this out.

Hey Ben -- I've been a long admirer of your work, both on your blog + Twitter and at Wave. I've thought for awhile that you'd be a good person to help mentor me and Rethink Priorities, as our growth/size has gotten to a point that is larger than a lot of us have prior experience with. Thanks for this initiative! Would you be willing to chat? If so, how should I get in touch with you?

Definitely! In this case I appear to have your email so reached out that way, but for anyone else who's reading this comment thread, Forum messages or the email address in the post both work as ways to get in touch!

If anyone wants to ask Ben for help, consider reading his tips for asking people for things

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