Giant Robots Smashing Into Other Giant Robots

About the show

A podcast about the design, development, and business of great software. Each week thoughtbot's Chad Pytel is joined by the people who build and nurture the products we love.


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    409: Career Growth and Being a Mindful Dev with Dagna Bieda

    February 3rd, 2022  |  Season 11  |  34 mins 10 secs

    Dagna Bieda is an engineer, career coach, and founder of She talks with Chad about being a software engineer first and then becoming a career coach who has helped a big range of clients with communication and marketing themselves successfully.

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    408: Shipyard with Benjie De Groot

    January 27th, 2022  |  Season 11  |  38 mins 56 secs

    Chad talks to Benjie De Groot, co-founder, and CEO of Shipyard. Shipyard manages, creates, builds, and deploys ephemeral environments.

    Benjie talks about how Shipyard became a funded company, discovering who their ideal customers are, and building out the core team so Shipyard can accelerate and figure out their next steps in how to bring it to the masses.

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    Assessment and Performance Metrics with Tiffany Shubert of Relias Healthcare

    January 20th, 2022  |  Season 11  |  43 mins 23 secs

    Chad talks to Tiffany Shubert, Senior Product Manager at Relias Healthcare. Relias is an online healthcare education company. They develop and create education and clinical content for anything from physicians to nurses, physical therapists, to in-home care aides in multiple healthcare settings. They span the entire range from acute care hospital settings to in-home care to hospice.

    Tiffany talks about how her clinical skills apply really well to product management, defining who you're solving the problem for, being all about your end-user, and making sure they have an amazing experience with your product.

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    406: thoughtbot 2021 Year-in-Review with CEO Diana Bald

    January 13th, 2022  |  Season 11  |  48 mins 24 secs

    Chad talks to the CEO of thoughtbot, Diana Bald, about 2021 in retrospect. thoughtbot, as a company, has settled into a new structure that contains different teams and committed to becoming a fully remote organization.

    Last year, Diana successfully transitioned into taking over the company's CEO role. She and Chad talk about the improvements the company made in 2021, including DEI (diversity, equity, inclusion) efforts and training sessions, and look ahead to some improvements coming in 2022, such as an expansion of the apprenticeship program.

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    405: RackN Digital Rebar with Rob Hirschfeld

    December 23rd, 2021  |  Season 11  |  47 mins 24 secs

    Chad talks to Rob Hirschfeld, the Founder and CEO of RackN, which develops software to help automate data centers, which they call Digital Rebar. RackN is focused on helping customers automate infrastructure. They focus on customer autonomy and self-management, and that's why they're a software company, not a services or as-a-service platform company.

    Digital Rebar is a platform that helps connect all of the different pieces and tools that people use to manage infrastructure into infrastructure pipelines through the seamless multi-component automation across all of the different pieces and parts that have to be run to bring up infrastructure.

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    404: My Goat with Neil Amrhein and Matt Erickson

    December 16th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  42 mins 17 secs

    Neal Amrhein is the founder and CEO and Matt Erickson is the CTO of My Goat. My Goat is a subscription mowing service for commercial properties. They use robotic mowers and elegant software tools to make turf care easy, convenient, and affordable.

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    403: Mission Control with Joe Ferris

    December 9th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  34 mins 4 secs

    Joe Ferris is thoughtbot's CTO and Managing Director of the thoughtbot DevOps and maintenance team known as Mission Control. Mission Control is our newest team doing DevOps Support, Maintenance, and SRE (Site Reliability Engineering). The goal of Mission Control, rather than building products or pairing with team members to improve their team like the rest of thoughtbot, is to support those teams and support other client teams in deploying and scaling applications. They have an on-call team and do more complex cloud build-outs with the goal being to empower and educate the teams that we work with so that they are more capable of working in those ecosystems on their own.

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    402: Lift Off with Emily Bahna

    December 2nd, 2021  |  Season 11  |  29 mins 9 secs

    Emily Bahna is a Managing Director at thoughtbot who leads the Lift Off team, where they focus on really leaning into the core of the company. The team works with new founders to launch new products or they work with existing companies that want to build out a new service or open up a new area to generate revenue for their business. But, the thing that ties Lift Off together, is that they start at ground zero to build upon an idea and actually build the first version product to get it out live into the marketplace.

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    401: thoughtbot Ignite with Dawn Delatte

    November 18th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  35 mins 36 secs

    Dawn Delatte a Designer and Managing Director at thoughtbot who leads the Ignite team, where they focus primarily on validating and launching early-stage products through design-thinking, business and product strategy, and iterative design and development. Dawn works collaboratively with designers and developers to ensure they add value to the people and products thoughtbot works with every day.

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    400: Launchpad II with Kirsten Hurley

    November 4th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  35 mins 27 secs

    Chad interviews Kirsten Hurley, Managing Director of thoughtbot's Launchpad II team. The Launchpad II team covers the EMEA area: that's Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. She talks about working remotely for almost the entire time she's worked with the company, her approach to talking with potential customers when she knows she's never going to meet them in person, and what she sees happening to the different geographies that thoughtbot is selling and expanding into.

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    399: thoughtbot Boost with Joshua Clayton

    October 28th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  39 mins 57 secs

    Chad interviews Managing Director at thoughtbot, Joshua Clayton, about what a Managing Director at thoughtbot does, what makes Boost at thoughtbot different than other teams, and the belief in integrated teams of designers and developers company-wide.

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    398: Education 2.0 with Victoria Ransom of Prisma

    October 21st, 2021  |  Season 11  |  41 mins 42 secs

    Chad interviews Co-Founder and CEO, Victoria Ranson of Prisma. Prisma is a stealth-mode education startup on a mission to reimagine the way children are educated. Their mission is to create a generation capable of solving the world's biggest problems by creating and running a comprehensive virtual learning program for kids in grades 4-8 that is very unlike any other traditional homeschooling program you've ever heard of.

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    397: Driven By Fulfillment with Natalie Nzeyimana of Harbour

    October 14th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  39 mins 37 secs

    At, Natalie Nzeyimana and her team are helping people build holistic resilience. On this episode, she and Chad talk about building the app at the beginning of the pandemic when she witnessed herself and others feeling like they were close to drowning and feeling really unmoored.

    Harbour is a space for people to anchor themselves, find clarity, and set sail. The community offers one-to-one coaching, workshops, a course, and a daily check-in tool.

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    396: Product Roadmaps Aren’t Dead; They Smell

    October 7th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  45 mins 38 secs

    Lindsey and Chad talk about product roadmaps. Are they dead? Lindsey and Chad think they just smell.

    We also say an emotional goodbye to Lindsey as she moves on to new adventures. We miss you!

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    395: Energy, Perspective, Priorities, and Intention with Jen Dary of Plucky

    September 30th, 2021  |  Season 11  |  48 mins 55 secs

    Chad talks to Leadership Coach and Founder of Plucky, Jen Dary, about working with individuals and companies to create healthy dynamics at work.

    In fact, Plucky just released a new product that aids in doing just that! Manager Weeklies are notebooks designed to help leaders intentionally set up their weeks and track progress. It includes tips and tricks, including useful 1:1 tools. Each notebook is designed to last one quarter.