Consensus and decision making

How to make decisions, collaborate and operate in the world of Micro and a distributed team.


Micro operates as a distributed company which means a lot of the face to face, high bandwidth discussions and ad-hoc overhead conversations are lost. It also means decisions are made a bit differently. As we grow we want to faciliate a set of rules or guidelines that help us scale.


A few guidelines for how to operate

1. Start a conversation

In a remote first environment its easy to avoid talking to people and sometimes it means we lose out on ways of clarifying our thinking, getting a second opinion or making mistakes that could be avoided upfront. When working on something, thinking about ideas, etc start a conversation. Get a dialogue going with other team members to help solve your problem, streamline your ideas, etc. It doesn’t take much time but also helps others understand the context before you start working on something.

2. Write a design doc

If you’re doing something new, adding a feature, creating a service, making a significant change or proposing something, the best thing to do is write one page that describes the problem, the solution you’re advocating for and a design e.g interface and proto along with example usage. Again it clarifies your own thinking but also means we have strong documentation and a plan for anything being implemented.

3. Implement and get feedback

Once doc goes around and there’s consensus or approval for implementation, get something written and start getting feedback. The faster you get feedback on the smallest working solution the more clarity you’ll have as to whether you’ve gone down the right path or not. The rest of the team can help where minor things need to change or maybe the implementation highlights issues with design that need to be revisited. Less is more in this case.