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Company | 06/20/2024

The Ledger Way – Chapter 2: Team Practices

Ledger VP of Engineering Carl Anderson focuses on our team practices in the second of three blog posts exploring what it’s like to be an engineer at Ledger. Find Carl on Linkedin here and the final blog post in the series here.

In the previous blog post, we looked at the key principles at the heart of everything we do. In this chapter, we’ll be talking about our team practices. While Ledger started small, our team has grown considerably, with a few hundred members of staff spread across multiple offices around the world today. 

It is often thought that Agile is easy to adopt in a small start-up environment, but that it is difficult to scale. This is because many of the benefits of Agile are achieved through a lightweight process that is possible within smaller networks of people working together.

It is true that as a company scales, maintaining all the benefits of Agile is a challenge that requires careful thinking. Ledger is no exception here: we have had to learn, evolve, and adapt as we have grown to remain Agile, while at the same time preventing chaos and loss of rigor.

Here are the key concepts and values of our mission:

Driven by Customer Value

The way work is organized, structured, designed, and delivered is optimized to provide end-customer value as quickly and as often as possible. This requires a commitment to build software iteratively. This is so that working software features can be delivered incrementally, progressively adding value to the product as the product provides more and more customer benefits. We love Goal Oriented Roadmaps.

Regular Feedback Loops

The success of your deliverables is measured and assessed to provide the opportunity to adapt plans, change priorities, and take any other necessary action. The more often this is done, the better evidence there is upon which to make business decisions.

In parallel, we also apply the principle of continuous improvement to the process. We examine each increment of the work we deliver and measure how efficiently we operate, continuously analyzing areas for improvement in our process and fine-tuning each detail.

Autonomy and Decentralized Decision-Making

We believe the best way to get things done is to work in small cross-functional teams with the skills to deliver product features end-to-end. These teams are given the autonomy to make the necessary decisions to achieve a product increment that meets the desired product goals.

Aligned Autonomy

While we believe some autonomy is essential to work efficiently, complete team autonomy does not scale.

This is because, as a single organization, teams must be able to interact with each other with a shared set of principles and common understanding to avoid wasteful complexity.

We have introduced a set of tools and best practices to allow our teams to operate autonomously while working towards a common goal. This set of protocols provides our developers with a unified communication standard across the organization, allowing them to interact seamlessly for purposes such as reporting.

Knowledge Sharing

Communities (e.g. React or Scala engineers) are supported by our “Community of Practices”: a concept we use to promote learning and improvement through talks, blogs, tech all hands, training, and other events. This set of craft-focused sessions aims to build up a body of best practices in our tech teams by tapping into the deep well of knowledge, expertise, and craftsmanship in our team.

Find the final blog post in the series here and check out Ledger’s careers page to join the engineering team!

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Announcements can be found in our blog. Press contact:
[email protected]

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