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May 2013 EL-SIG: Working with Remote/Overseas Teams Panel

  • May 16, 2013 · 6:30 PM
  • This location is shown only to members


Book Swap: Don't forget to bring a book on technology, leadership, or project management to donate to the book swap. We are running low on inventory and need more donations to keep it going.

Share your insights! Participate in the peer-to-peer roundtable from 6:31 to 6:59! Make friends!

TITLE: Working with Remote/Overseas Teams Panel

Panelists: Sath Sathyanarayan, Tâm Nguyen, Steve Mezak, Sam Hahn

Panel Chair: Thomas De Lora

Details of talk:

If you are working in the Valley today chances are you are working with a person or a team that is located in a different timezone, be it in North America or overseas. And while the benefits of this kind of work environment can be debatable the extra effort required from the teams and their management is not; more thought is required in coordination and communications and meetings may need to occur in odd hours that may impact the personal time of those involved.

This interactive panel discussion on Remote/Overseas Teams is intended to help bring together the variety of experiences in this area from different companies, not just from our panelists but from the audience as well. Lets discuss the good, bad, best practices and anything else you may have in mind, we can all may learn a thing or two. This talk is not just for managers but also for the individual contributors who have to interact with remote teams and perhaps aspire to lead in the future. No matter what your level come join us, bring your thoughts, concerns and perhaps an horror story or two…

If you have a particular issue/question/problem you would like to see discussed at the session please e-mail the panel chair (Thomas De Lora) via the e-mail button on his Meetup member page.

Panelist Bios:

Sath Sathyanarayan

Sath is President of Offshoring Success LLC, an advisory firm specializing in improving effectiveness of offshore centers – outsourced and captive. In addition to pioneering work in offshoring for over two decades he has provided leadership to product development and IT organizations. Prior to Offshoring Success, he was a senior executive at a Fortune 500 Corporation, Founder and CEO of a startup. He has helped dozens of executives across industries achieve offshoring success. He has written a book on best practices for offshore development, published a number of articles and invited speaker at industry conferences. For his complete bio please click here.

Steve Mezek

Steve Mezak is CEO of Accelerance, the global software outsourcing authority. Accelerance helps clients who are struggling to hire programmers and who don't have the many months required to find & evaluate offshore software development firms. A referral to the best-fit, deeply-assessed software development companies in the Accelerance network of 30 partners in over a dozen countries around the world… takes just 48 hours, and is free.

Steve is also the author of the book Software without Borders. The 2nd edition was just announced and is being written in Agile development fashion. Go to the book website and share your thoughts and criticisms to get social media cred and your name printed in the final published work!

Tâm Nguyen

Tâm Nguyen has extensive experience working with global teams in Europe and Asia. As the Delivery Manager at TiVo, he leads a global team from multiple vendors to deliver the TiVo DVR to over 1 million Virgin Media customers in the UK. He also champions the use of collaborative tools for the full software life cycle, and designs best practices that use Jira for project/portfolio management, cross functional team coordination, and Agile team  support.

Tâm received his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley and started his career at IBM Research, where he invented a hybrid digital/analog video hub for Video On Demand.  He also architected Net.Data for building dynamic websites with IBM DB2 database, and negotiated with Panasonic's QA team to accept ReplayTV for shipment.

Sam Hahn

Sam Hahn is currently VP Engineering at eGain where he has grown the Engineering Team from ~30 in 2007 to ~120 today while increasing the onshore operations from <10% to ~25% in the same period. He is currently in charge of two major offshore centers in Pune and Delhi. Formally Sam was VPE at Purisma,, and DocuMagix (also co-Founder), Director of Product Management & Engineering at Siebel Systems. Ex-Chair of TWAIN Working Group, Bootstrap Alliance (for Doug Engelbart). Member, VPE Community of Practice, CSPA Partner at Sand Hill Angels.  He has a mathematics degree from Stanford, is a Life Member of ACM and Monte Jade.


Snack and Beverage Sponsor: Ryzen Solutions

Ryzen Solutions has been finding high caliber individuals for our clients in high-tech industries since 1999. We have access to thousands of professionals; even those that are passive candidates and not actively looking, and whose resumes' are not posted on the public job boards. Our own internal database has over 51,000 candidates. Ryzen Solutions has been one of the best firms in Silicon Valley. Our recruiters have degrees in electrical, software and mechanical engineering. Our clients such as Apple, Cisco, eBay, PayPal, Samsung and many more have worked with us for many years because our team of 16+ recruiters work collaboratively to find the top talents for our clients.

ONGOING MANAGEMENT SPONSOR: Project Connections is dedicated to practically and affordably supporting individuals as they do their jobs day-to-day and helping them grow their management abilities and careers. We also provide management development and support resources to organizations, through group subscriptions, methodology content licenses, on-demand virtual training programs, virtual coaching, and more - all to help managers improve how critical project work gets done, and to help grow the capabilities of everyone on their staffs and teams.

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6:15 - 7:00 Early arrival recommended!
6:30 - 7:00 Registration / Checkin
6:30 - 7:00 Enjoy wine, beer, cheese, fruit, snacks, pizza, soda and networking
6:31 - 6:59 Engineering Leadership Peer-2-Peer Roundtable
7:00 - 7:10 Introduction and opening announcements
7:10 - 8:25 Keynote and Q&A
8:25 - 8:30 Closing announcements
8:30 - 8:45 Informal networking and followup Q&A
8:45 - 8:50 Clean up - please leave the room beautiful
8:50 - 9:00 Clear the room & have a safe trip home!


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  • Steve M.

    I enjoyed being on this panel and the quality of the questions from, and active discussion with, the audience. If you are looking to attend meetings in Silicon Valley with experienced software professionals then this SIG should be on your short list!
    Let's continue the discussion here... What was your major take-away from the meeting?

    1 · May 17, 2013

    • Ron L.

      I should also note: one company is likely outsourcing a second application to a highly-knowledgeable US-based team. But another client previously outsourced to a prestige US team that promptly outsourced to a team in the furthest part of the world but charged premium US prices and has nearly bankrupted my client. One previously outsourced to a team in Asia that "crafted" a pile of spaghetti. This software development stuff is complex if you do it yourself but complex in whole other ways when you want someone else to do it for you - regardless of where they're located.

      May 18, 2013

    • Ron L.

      Finally: Our book has an 80-page center section of 300 rules of thumb for managing software development, a whole series of which talk to the value of eyeball-to-eyeball communication and the cost of adding distance to software teams. (Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams, http://www.ManagingTh...­ ). Who was it who invented distributed teams just as Agile was evangelizing F2F? There's a laugh-out-loud standup (as in comedy, not scrum) of a distributed team meeting deciding an important issue at:­

      May 18, 2013

  • Sue S.

    great discussion.

    1 · May 16, 2013

  • Larry P.

    Great discussion topic. Excellent experiences and viewpoints shared by panelists.

    1 · May 16, 2013

  • Sam H.

    Panel with Tom Tam Steve

    May 16, 2013

  • David G. L.

    Great topic

    May 1, 2013

50 went

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