Spotify’s failed #SquadGoals | Jeremiah Lee (Spotify, Stripe)
Play • 44 min

This week’s guest is Jeremiah Lee, who was previously a manager at Stripe and product manager at Spotify. This conversation focuses on org structure, and specifically Jeremiah’s experience with the popular squad model from Spotify. Jeremiah provides the backstory on where the model came from, what parts of the model were a challenge, and advice for leaders either already adopting the model or considering doing so.

Discussion points:

(1:40) What the Spotify model is

(4:39) Jeremiah’s impression of the Spotify model as he joined the company

(7:29) Spotify’s progress in adopting the model as Jeremiah joined

(9:55) Challenges with matrix management

(12:02) The role of engineering managers 

(14:40) What the model was designed to solve 

(15:54) Good autonomy versus toxic autonomy 

(18:51) How Agile coaches were used at Spotify 

(21:39) Advice for teams who are struggling to implement the Spotify model

(24:50) Advice for leaders who are starting to think about org design

(27:30) How Stripe approached org structure 

(30:26) How org structure affects a platform team’s work 

(33:32) Tracking engineering org structures 

(36:02) Why the squad model became so popular

(39:37) What the original authors may have felt about the popularity of the model


Mentions and links: 

Follow Jeremiah on LinkedIn

Jeremiah’s Spotify’s Failed #SquadGoals

The original whitepaper on the Spotify model: Scaling Agile at Spotify

Team Topologies by Matthew Skelton and Manuel Pais

Essential Scrum by Kenneth S. Rubin

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