The model was stolen from Ben & Jerry's - the ice cream company. It says that there are three pillars to a company: Sustainable Business, Software Excellence, and Social Justice . Each pillar has its own definition of success and for the company to be successful it has to balance the aims of all three pillars. While the pillars are not fundamentally in conflict, they are often in tension - which is where the balancing comes in.
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The Sustainable Business pillar is about ensuring we have a financially viable business. We've done pretty well on this one over the years, which is why we are still around. We've now weathered two recessions - and I've always considered that a company's performance in a recession is where you find out how strong it is commercially. We've also grown a lot over the last decade, from around 300 people in the US when I joined to about 1800 globally now. So kudos here to our operational management team.
2: Most consulting companies do not talk about their work publicly other than for marketing purposes. The commercial calculation runs that it costs significant money in lost billing for people to do public facing work such as articles and conferences. Also it's foolish to share key techniques with competitors or potential clients who could then use these techniques without the consultancy.
The Software Excellence pillar is one that in broader terms I'd call a Professional Excellence pillar. It's about doing what you do really well. For Ben & Jerry's this was about making really good ice-cream, in our case it's about being really good at delivering valuable software. This pillar is the one that resonates so much with me. It's why we work very hard at continuously improving the way we do things.
pillar is about looking more broadly at our impact as a company - are we making the world a better place? There are those who think such a question is irrelevant for a company - a commercial enterprise is there to make money, full stop. By this test it's okay to sell whatever anyone will buy, even if it harms the customer and the broader society. I don't agree with this notion - I'm very happy to make money, but I believe that revenue should come from providing something valuable to customers and society.
The most important rule of product organizational structures is that they should closely mirror the partner functions. So engineering, product management, and design should tend to have structures that match each other whenever possible.
Product teams tend to work best when aligned with how engineering, design, and other partner functions are structured, so there are 1:1 relationships between leadership roles in those functions.
Let’s start with security. It’s at the forefront of many minds these days, with supply chain issues, cryptojacking and data breaches being common news stories. WebAssembly brings some big guns to the security fight in a number of ways, starting with its security sandbox.
When WASM is executed, the code is not given access to anything, including the network, file system or anything else out of the box. This is known as a deny-by-default security model. For the code running inside the WASM sandbox to interact with the outside world, it must be explicitly granted access to host functions.
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