Minimum Viable Bureaucracy

Laura Thomson (Mozilla Corporation)
Location: E144 Level: Intermediate
Average rating: ****.
(4.39, 18 ratings)
Slides:   1-PDF 

As your team grows and your projects become more complex, you’re going to need a certain amount of process. In this talk I’ll explain how to add enough engineering management to be effective without driving engineers crazy.

I’ll discuss:

  • Basics of chaordic systems (or: how open source projects succeed without project management)
  • Building trust and preserving autonomy
  • Effective communication practices for IRC, email, and bugs
  • The meetings you have to have, and the ones you should avoid
  • Architecture design and problem solving in a less-structured environment
  • Minimum viable documentation
  • Goals, scheduling, and anti-estimation
  • Shipping and managing scope creep and perfectionism
  • How to lead instead of merely managing
  • Emergent process and how to iterate

Attendees should leave the session with a plan to optimize their teams for developer happiness and shipping great code.

Photo of Laura Thomson

Laura Thomson

Mozilla Corporation

Laura Thomson is a Senior Engineering Manager at Mozilla Corporation. She works with the Webtools team, which is responsible for the Firefox Crash Reporting system and other developer tools.

Laura is the co-author of “PHP and MySQL Web Development” and “MySQL Tutorial”. She is a veteran speaker at Open Source conferences world wide.


Sponsorship Opportunities

For information on exhibition and sponsorship opportunities at the conference, contact Sharon Cordesse at (707) 827-7065 or

Contact Us

View a complete list of OSCON contacts