[A Conference for CTOs]
How Do You Work With Other Senior Leaders?

What is expected of a CTO in the modern business? How are these expectations changing?

Grab a front-row seat to the most in-depth discussions of what it means to be a senior leader in a technology organisation, how to build a solid foundation with other C-level leaders, how to ensure alignment between engineering and other functions and how to keep you and your team’s skills sharp.

Join us online on November 14th – 16th for two days of expert talks and panels, and a day-long Unconference where you’ll be able to learn from CTO Craft community members.

The World's Best CTOs & Engineering Leaders

Join the conversation, and network with CTOs from some of the world's most successful startups.

Continue The Conversation

Join over 4,000 other CTOs and engineering leaders in the free CTO Craft Slack community, where we'll host additional discussions and Q&A with the speakers.

Session Recordings to Watch When You Want

All the virtual conference sessions will be available as recordings after the event to watch at your convenience.

Share Your Insights in an Unconference

The final day will be an Unconference, where you can learn from other members of the CTO Craft community or share your own insights and learnings.
[Our Speakers]
Who's Speaking?

Join us for an afternoon of inspiring keynotes and fireside chats with some of the best engineering leadership thought leaders in the world.

Founder & CEO at Skiller Whale
Andy Ayim
Investor, EIR & Product Leader
Smruti Patel
VP of Engineering, Apollo
CTO at Stack Overflow
Author of Dynamic Reteaming
Robin Sutara
Field CTO at Databricks
Leadership & Executive Coach and Consultant
CTO & Engineering Leader
Choose Your Tickets and Join the Show
Amazing Speakers
Talks and Panels
Hours of Expert Insights
Engineering Leaders
[Conference Timetable]
What's on the cards?
Monday November 14th
Engineering & Product
Tuesday November 15th
Leadership & Alignment
Wednesday November 16th
2:00pm - 2:05pm GMT
Welcome to CTO Craft Con Winter 2022!
CTO Craft Founder & Coach Andy Skipper introduces the Conference day ahead.
2:05pm - 2:50pm GMT
Robin Sutara
Keynote: C-Who? The evolving roles of C-Suites in Technology
Join Robin Sutara, Field CTO at Databricks, as she shares a bit of her career journey transitioning from a Chief Operating Officer to a Chief Data Officer to a Chief Technology Officer, and the power of being flexible in an evolving world as more and more companies become technology-led.
2:50pm - 3.20pm GMT
Talk: How to Mentor Genius Engineers
Getting the best out of your team of Engineers is like an art, and a science, which is why all leaders will have experienced a freshly employed Engineer with huge promise, but a lack of experience and knowledge. Somebody that might even be better at coding than you, but can't yet be left on their own.

In this talk, Alessandro Canessa (Head of Engineering at EY) will share his experience of mentoring a genius with loads of knowledge, but not so much wisdom (yet).

3:20pm - 3:50pm GMT
Debate: Tests vs Observability
Overview – two different data approaches with varying pros and cons. Our speakers will discuss the strategies and debate the impacts and outcomes of both.
Moderator – Glyn Roberts, CTO of Digital Solutions at iTechArt.
Speakers – Charity Majors, CTO at Honeycomb and Mason Jones, Director of Engineering, Infrastructure at Lattice, Adriana Villela Senior Technical Leader at Lightstep
3:50pm - 4:10pm GMT
Grab a tasty beverage and check your emails - we'll be back shortly!
4:10pm - 4:40pm GMT
Talk: We need to talk about code quality
One of the most destructive myths in software is that it costs more or takes longer to develop higher-quality code. All too many engineering teams fall into this trap. This leads to code bases that are mired in “technical debt” and are difficult to work with. The team's slow progress disappoints stakeholders. Engineers find their work frustrating and unsatisfying.

Everybody loses.

In this talk , CTO Advisor and Coach Joel Chippindale will look at why our teams fall into this trap and share some practical ways for us to help them to avoid it.

4:40pm - 5:10pm GMT
Talk: Debugging People Problems
We've all had problems at work that boil down to two or more people who cannot communicate or get along. As a technology leader, you may have to put on your school teacher or therapist hat to help resolve the problem. This talk uses case studies of common interpersonal issues on tech teams and how to resolve them. This talk will cover foundational concepts like psychological safety as well as specific tools like mediation or design-thinking workshops that you can use to debug people problems in your organization.

By the end of the talk from SoLo Funds' VP of Engineering Frankie Nicoletti, you will have a toolkit at your disposal for helping everyone do their best work.

5:10pm - 5:40pm GMT
Smruti Patel
Fireside chat with Smruti Patel, VP of Engineering at Apollo
Emma Hopkinson-Spark joins Smruti Patel by the fire.
5:40pm - 6:00pm GMT
Grab a tasty beverage and check your emails - we'll be back shortly!
6:00pm - 6:30pm GMT
Fireside chat: Lessons learned from 7 layoffs in 7 days
Layoffs are never fun. If Covid has taught us one thing, it's that layoffs are here to stay. Sadly, they are part of doing business.

So why does no one talk about it?

In this Fireside Chat, James Conroy-Finn talks to CTO and Engineering Leader Claudius Mbemba who shares lessons learned from recent layoff experience in hopes that it better prepares other executives if and when the time comes.

6:30pm - 7:00pm GMT
Panel: Product and tech
Overview – how much do you know about your product strategy, and how can you improve it? We’ve invited some heavy hitters in the product world to give you some exciting insights.
Speakers – Christina Weiss, Product Management & Strategy Consultant at CKW Consulting; Morgan Sadr-Hashemi, CPTO at Flash Pack and Adam Witwer, Chief Product Officer at O'Reilly.
7:00pm - 7:30pm GMT
Keynote: Why you must invest in your people in a downturn
With the effects of the pandemic still fresh in our collective memories, we now enter another period of uncertainty with rising costs of living and a looming recession. The question is, how do we navigate this period and still hit our product milestones?

In this talk, Founder & CEO at Skiller Whale Hywel Carver will draw on lessons learned by those companies that pulled through a downturn, as well as his own experience of doing more with less. He will investigate the merits of investing in your existing team versus hiring, and introduce a framework for coaching hard and soft skills to extend tech capacity without adding headcount.

7:30pm - 7:35pm GMT
End of Day One!
2:00pm - 2:05pm GMT
Welcome to Day Two!
CTO Craft Founder & Coach Andy Skipper introduces the Conference day ahead.
2:05pm - 2:50pm GMT
Keynote: Effective leadership in a hybrid world: How to succeed when you can’t be ubiquitous.
Being a technical- or people leader in a hybrid work environment can be extra challenging: While on paper, it may look like hybrid work combines the “best of both [remote and co-located] worlds”, the reality often looks drastically different:

Yet, reflecting on the way you work and supporting others while you’re adjusting to a new model yourself can be really hard! This is why, in this session, Lena takes a few steps back to focus on principles that you can apply to succeed as a leader and help your teams thrive.

You’ll walk away with practical tips that you can start implementing on your next workday in order to lead more effectively in a hybrid environment. You’ll hear concrete examples from leaders that have done it before, and lessons to learn from them. In addition, you’ll take away a set of higher-level principles that you can modify to suit your role, and use to increase your impact as a leader.

2:50pm - 3:20pm GMT
Fireside chat: Dynamic Reteaming: The Art & Wisdom of Changing Teams
Dynamic Reteaming is team change. Teams evolve and change structurally according to 5 base patterns: one by one, grow and split, isolation, merging and switching. These changes happen at different levels: individual, team, team of teams, department, company, industry and beyond.

Sometimes we catalyze the changes and it’s in our control. Other times, the changes happen to us and we are forced to adapt.

Author Heidi Helfand is in conversation with James Conroy-Finn about her book Dynamic Reteaming the Art and Wisdom of Changing teams.

3:20pm - 3:50pm GMT
Panel: Developer happiness and the downturn
Overview – how have recent years impacted developer happiness, and what can we do as leaders to be aware of such issues and proactively bridge the gap? Our speakers have the answers.
Speakers – Laura Tacho, Engineering Leadership Coach and VP of Engineering; Cornel Fatulescu, Chief Platform Officer at Pentalog; Abby Seneor, CTO at Citibeats and Andy Clarke, CTO & Co-Founder at Evidenced.
3:50pm - 4:10pm GMT
Grab a tasty beverage and check your emails - we'll be back shortly!
4:10pm - 4:40pm GMT
Talk: How managers can lead with visibility
Becoming a manager is one of the hardest shifts in any individual contributor’s career. As IC, most of the time you write code. As a result of the predictability that comes with writing code, you can write test cases with confidence that they will continue to work as planned. But as an engineering manager, you deal more with people topics which are not that predictable. The further you go up from the software team, the more you’re removed from the team’s day-to-day challenges, activities, and flow. But to steer your teams in the right direction, guard culture, and improve team health and engagement, you need visibility (observability). You need to be able to infer the state of your teams from the outside and be able to understand the state of things by looking at data.

In this talk, Software Engineering Manager at Redditt James Samuel grounds discussion on obtaining and measuring data that matters to give you visibility into your teams.

4:40pm - 5:10pm GMT
Talk: Org culture for Net Zero
As the global community looks to reorganise to tackle the most important and urgent issue humanity may ever face, it’s obvious that clean energy production is at the core of the solution.

Armakuni Co-Founder Ben Dodd gives insight into how the digital revolution is enabling renewable energy and how the infrastructure, code, data, analytics and ML pipelines that connect areas of that infrastructure enable every last drop of energy to be collected.

This is a story with scalability at its heart and how every lesson the DevOps community has learned is going to be needed to meet the exponential growth the world needs to realise in our journey to sustainable, renewable energy.

5:10pm - 5:40pm GMT
Talk: Scaling the CTO: How to become the right leader at the right stage of your company
The role of the CTO is complex, multi-disciplinary, and frankly overwhelming. We have to keep the engines running, while inventing the future, growing our teams, fighting off hackers, managing budgets, and keeping everyone happy. As soon as we think we have a handle on what our priorities should be, everything changes as we enter a new phase of growth. In this talk, Executive Coach Eric Weiss shares a maturity model for the role of the CTO at each stage of growth, highlighting the key focus areas, success metrics, and new challenges.
5:40pm - 6:00pm GMT
Grab a tasty beverage and check your emails - we'll be back shortly!
6:00pm - 7:00pm GMT
Panel: What your First Team really want from you
Overview – how do you define a first team and ensure you understand and deliver what they want? Our expert panel will discuss everything you need to know.
Moderator – Jessica Zwaan, Chief Operating Officer at Whereby.

Speakers – Maya Moufarek, Growth CMO Consultant, Marketing Cube; Andy Ayim, Venture Partner and Investor Coach; Josh Knowles, VP of Strategy and Operations, Code Climate and Melissa Trahan, VP of People at Farewill.

7:00pm - 7:30pm GMT
Keynote: Building Resilient Teams for Scale
Over 70% of developers are learning a new technology at least once a year. That means, by the time someone graduates from college or university, the latest developer language or technology would have changed at least 4 times. Organizations no longer have the luxury of hiring highly specialized skill sets. Developers are learning by doing in real-time and seeking collaboration tools to help them build faster. Meanwhile, technology leaders are tasked with building agile teams with diverse skill sets at scale. In this talk, Stack Overflow CTO Jody Bailey will discuss why collaboration and democratising institutional knowledge is essential for scale and how to create more agile teams ready to build for the future.
7:30pm - 7:35pm GMT
End of Day Two!
2:00pm - 2:05pm GMT
Welcome to the Unconference!
2:05pm - 5.00pm GMT
Lighting Talks
Community members and conference attendees have the opportunity to take the stage and to share their perspective on what they’ve learnt during the conference, support fellow engineering leaders in a low-stakes, fun environment.
We’ll be releasing more details on how to take part very soon so subscribe to our emails to find out more.
5:10pm - 5:15pm GMT
Introduction to Roundtables
5:15pm - 7:15pm GMT
Roundtable sessions
Following on from out Lightning Talk sessions, a series of Roundtable Sessions provide the opportunity to discuss and elaborate on everything heard and talked about at the Winter 2022 Conference as well as network and make new connections with your fellow leaders.
7:15pm - 7:30pm GMT
End of Conference Wrap-Up

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CTO Craft Con Winter 2022 - A Conference for CTOs, by CTOs
Grab a front-row seat to the most in-depth discussions of what it means to be a senior leader in a technology organisation, how to build a solid foundation with other C-level leaders, how to ensure alignment between engineering and other functions and how to keep you and your team’s skills sharp. November 14 - 16 2022
When: -
Where: Online!
Internet Avenue
Series of Tubes