Friday, 19 April 2013

Question about SI's level of openness and empowerment

I was asked today this question
    "Hi Dinis, just been looking at your blog. I saw the following quote "So if you are looking for a job to work on an spectacularly amazing project, lead by a crazy dude (me), for a company with a great culture of openness + empowerment, this is your opportunity." Can you elaborate a bit on the openness and empowerment?"
And here is my unedited answer:
    Hi , sorry about this delay (I don't check my LinkedIn messages very often (the is a better way to contact me)

    Well if you look at the TeamMentor related posts on my blog (, the TeamMentor dev team blog ( the TeamMentor source Code ( and TeamMentor Issues ( you will see that SecurityInnovation allow us (the TM dev team) a high degree of openness.

    The empowerment can be seen by the type of technologies we use (Git, GitHub, AngularJS, jQuery, O2 Platform, Azure, TeamCity, PostSharp, NGit, RazorSharp) where we are allowed to be proactive in finding the best solution for the problem at hand.

    Add to that the fact that most of our team is located somewhere in world (from East Asia, to Ireland, to London, to USofA, to Costa Rica) with most of us working from home or cafes, and you see that we have a high degree openness and empowerment :)

    Note that this doesn't mean that Jason Taylor (who I report to at SI) is not on top of things. There are regular meetings, targets, objectives, annual reviews, bonus and all that Jazz.

    It's just that SI's management (namely CEO's Ed Adams) has a very pragmatic/healthy view of how a company should work, and has found a really great way to delegate responsibilities.
    Oh, and the SI's services team has some of the best hackers (in the good sense of the world) that you can find, and their HQ (in Seattle) as more to do with DefCon than with a corporate office :)
    Did that answer your question?

Note: I think it speaks volumes for SI's openness that the first time Ed and Jason are going to see this response is going to be via a  link to the live post of this blog entry :)

I'm really enjoying the level of 'independence and empowerment to blog' that I currently have today at SI (it took a while to ramp up, but I think we're in a great place now). For example I think the OunceLabs guys would had had a number of heart attacks if I had written about the OunceLabs product (now AppScan Source) the same way that I write about TeamMentor :)