Eric D. Schabell: WTF is SRE 2023 - Telling Effective Tales About Production (slides + recording)

Friday, May 5, 2023

WTF is SRE 2023 - Telling Effective Tales About Production (slides + recording)

Spent this week in London at the WTF is SRE 2023 conference sharing some thoughts on how to tell more effective tales in your organization of effect change. 

It was the fourth edition of this event and they  pulled together four tracks; Observability, Reliability, DevEx and DevSecOps. 

You must be asking the same thing I was when I first saw this conference, what is WTF is SRE? Well as they say on their site, "It is a highly-rated, very-tweeted-about, ridiculously-fun, wildly-insightful two-day conference designed to improve the world of Site Reliability Engineering (SRE)."

As you can tell from the tone and style, these have got to be some really fun people to hang out with for a few days, so here's my thoughts and the slides from my talk.

My session was on a topic near to my heart, helping SREs tell their best stories about production and hopefully expand their toolbox with the ability to convince management to take action on their suggestions for improvements.

The recording of the session:

For completeness, below are the session slides:

Lastly, below the original abstract:

Telling Effective Tales About Production

Storytelling is as old as time itself…. Since the beginning of humankind, we share our experiences, we teach, we inspire, we relate to stories as told all around us. How can we learn to use this powerful mechanism to tell effective tales about our production environments when dealing with our management teams? 

Learn how humans listen to stories (tales) more than they pay attention to pages of charts, dashboards, and data. If you want to learn how to make sure your message lands and how to effectively manage upwards in your organization, this is the session for you. Attendees will depart with a small yet powerful set of actionable examples that almost ensure your stories will capture your management's attention. One thing is certain, stories are being told, but what are your production stories and how can you become adept at telling them?

Key takeaways - attendees to this session will be given a small yet powerful set of examples to help them effectively communicate system risks and opportunities upwards to leadership and across engineering domains.. Humans listen to stories (tales) more than they pay attention to pages of charts, dashboards, and data. Learn how to tell your production stories and ensure your message lands with your management.

Thanks to those that attended my talk and I hope you are able to head back to your organizations with some new ideas on how to better tell your stories and effect change!





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