In engineering we (rightly) talk a lot about how to scale our systems and our infrastructure. Yet some of our very hardest challenges come when scaling the people side of things. How do you survive your team doubling, tripling or perhaps even a 10x growth in a short period of time? What does it take to grow fast AND retain the bits of your culture as a team or organisation that made you great to begin with? How do you know when to change how you do things, without just cargo culting? Having scaled a number of teams at different speeds, Meri will talk through some of the inflection points you'll experience, how to navigate them, and reflect on all the things she wishes she'd known just a little bit earlier...
Meri is an experienced CTO and leader of technology organisations. She particularly enjoys helping others to level up as technical leaders and managers of organisations, and works as a CTO coach and tech advisor to various companies in this capacity through micro-consultancy ChromeRose.
She’s had a career spanning development, project, programme and product management, mostly in engineering & operations leadership. Her particular specialty is rapidly scaling technology organisations whilst simultaneously improving their team diversity, inclusion, delivery, technological excellence, and ways of working.
She has led teams ranging in size from 30 to 300, in a range of organisations from Procter & Gamble, to the Government Digital Service, award-winning online print company MOO, mobile-first challenger bank Monzo and patient-inspired AI-driven rare disease treatment discovery company Healx, amongst others.
A published author and international speaker, she is the chair of The Lead Developer conference which now runs in many cities across the world including London, New York, San Francisco and Berlin. She is also a technology advisor for Kindred Capital, who practice equitable venture, making founders they invest in co-owners of the fund.
She and her wife Elly sponsor scholarships to help more girls start STEM careers in her hometown of Stellenbosch, South Africa, through micro-charity One Goes Up, as well as Arts scholarships and Women in Technology scholarships at The University of Bath. She also serves as a board trustee for Stonewall, the UK’s leading LGBTQ+ rights charity.
In her spare time she enjoys building complex Lego, board & video gaming, snorkelling and underwater photography, as well as travelling and exploring cultures mostly through food (@meatleader).