Part 4: Tackling the tough stuff

October 13, 2020 • 11am – 2pm EDT

Co-host

Sarah Milstein

Senior Director of Engineering

Mailchimp

Sarah Milstein

Co-host

Frantz Joseph

Director of Engineering

Mailchimp

Frantz Joseph

Session summary

Alongside all of the positive experiences of being a manager, there will also be times when you have to navigate difficult situations. Managing underperformance, addressing bad behaviour, and even letting people go are possible, and likely inevitable parts of your job.

They can be uncomfortable to tackle, but as a good manager it’s your job to develop these skills so that if the time comes you can do right by your employees. These conversations will also be the ones that shape and define who you are as a leader.

So how do you handle tough conversations with empathy, but also the feeling that you’re doing the right thing.

You’ll leave this session with:

  • An understanding of what your role is as a leader in tough situations
  • A toolkit for avoiding mindsets that can hinder your interactions in these settings
  • A framework to support you in these conversations and processes
  • Strategies for preparation and advice on planning follow-ups and aftercare

About Sarah Milstein

Sarah Milstein is a Senior Director of Engineering at Mailchimp. Previous roles include Head of Sales & Marketing for 18F.gov; VP of Programs for indie.vc; CEO and co-founder of Lean Startup Productions; and co-author of The Twitter Book. She's also held senior management positions at O’Reilly Media, UBM TechWeb, and several startups.

Earlier, she was a freelance journalist writing regularly for The New York Times, she co-founded a record label with children’s musician Laurie Berkner, and she started Just Food's CSA program. She holds an MBA from UC Berkeley and a BA from Rutgers University. Bonus fact: She was the 21st user of Twitter.

About Frantz Joseph

Frantz Joseph is a Director of Engineering working remotely at Mailchimp. He manages multiple, distributed teams from his home in Los Angeles. Over his 16 year career, he has worked as an engineer and manager in various parts of tech including video games, streaming radio, e-commerce, marketing, and a social network. He has a passion for building inclusive communities, extending opportunity to often overlooked groups, and leading with empathy.

When not talking about leadership in tech you can find Frantz consuming classic film or in the kitchen experimenting with cuisine from his native Haiti.

Got questions?

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