Contributing

Request for Authors

Holloway Editorial Team
▪︎ 16 minutes read time

Contributing to Holloway

Photo credit: Patrick Kristine Isabedra

Introduction4 links

Holloway publishes comprehensive, practical Guides on a wide variety of work-related subjects—all researched, written, and refined by experts. Below is a list of subjects we want to publish as either full Guides or shorter public pieces like Fundamentals of Product-Market Fit. Taking a cue from Y Combinator’s Request for Startups (RFS), this is our Request for Authors (RFA).

Please get in touch at contributing@holloway.com if you:

  • Are interested in writing on any of the subjects below;
  • Are interested in writing on any subject not listed below;
  • Would like us to publish content on any subject, listed below or not.

If you’re interested in learning how contributing to Holloway works, read Contributing to Holloway. If you’re interested in reading a Guide to get an idea of what kind of content we create, check out The Holloway Guide to Equity Compensation.

New ManagersRemote and Distributed TeamsCareer Development
CompensationGrowth MarketingBecoming a Software Engineer

New Managers4 minutes

Why this topic

Being a first-time manager can feel like a sink-or-swim moment. Most first-time managers are thrown in in the deep end, and turn to an endless stream of books and blog posts to get their head out of water—but it's hard to know what to focus on as a new manager, and what to trust.

Much like recruiting and hiring, companies and teams keep using the same strategies that have been used for decades. As the world of work and management rapidly change—with the advent of the “gig economy” and increasingly distributed teams—best practices need to change too.

Who it’s for

We’d like to create the world’s most helpful resource for new managers to learn the foundations of management that will set them up for a career of leadership and results. This Guide should be useful for those who:

  • Are interested in becoming a manager.
  • Have just been promoted.
  • Are currently managers but feel overwhelmed and are struggling.
  • Are promoting team members to management and want to provide those individuals with a foundational resource.
  • New managers in both large, small, old, and new companies (not just startups!).

How it will be helpful

There’s more management books out there than any reasonable human with an existing job can possibly wade through. Beyond that, they tend to fall into two categories:

  • Broad (think HBR, Gallup) surveys that lack enough actionable depth for new managers who need thorough, detailed guidance.
  • Individual perspectives, focusing on what they’ve seen work well (or not), which may often lack enough breadth or incorporation of research and other available material on the topic.

Each offers its own perspective, often replete with their own custom frameworks, tools, tips and approaches. How do you know which one to pick? Who has time to read them all and decide what to adopt and what to ignore?

What would be in it

An assessment and incorporation of relevant existing material (including original research), synthesis of a variety of approaches, tools, and techniques for new managers, and contribution from a variety of experts, both those who have amassed decades of experience and those recently climbing out of the new management trenches. Topics likely to include:

  • Decision-making frameworks.
  • Key differences between individual contributor work and management.
  • Big company vs. small company.
  • Goal setting.
  • Giving feedback.
  • Holding 1:1s.
  • Assessing your team’s skills.
  • Building rapport.
  • Communication (with individuals, your team, other teams, your managers, execs, the board of directors).
  • Handling difficult situations.
  • Culture & diversity.
  • Project management.
  • Budgeting.
  • Hiring.

Remote and Distributed Teams4 minutes, 1 links

Why this topic

The nature of knowledge work, and the explosion of tools related to that, have made sitting next to people in the same office less and less necessary

It’s moving beyond a trend or a Twitter bubble. Big—very big—companies are shifting from remote work as a contractor-based extension of their business to a standard organizational tactic. Small companies and startups now have a vast array of tools (largely thanks to the cloud) for managing employees in novel ways that means they can look at operating this way from the get-go.

Economic and social pressures will continue to make remote work and distributed teams more appealing to individual employees, pushing it towards table stakes for organizations that want to stay competitive in the hiring market.

Who it’s for

Many companies that have embraced remote or distributed work have created manuals to how they do things for others to learn from, most notably GitLab. We want to create the most comprehensive and helpful practical manual for executives and managers to:

  • Understand the differences between different types of remote work.
  • Weigh the costs and benefits of fully remote, partially remote, or no remote work.
  • Understand the forces at work behind the growing trend of remote work.
  • Learn how existing companies have succeeded and failed at creating remote cultures.
  • Determine whether some form of remote work is right for their company.

How it will be helpful

Unlike the time-honored tradition of rising into the ranks of management, this is a relatively new thing. The signal-to-noise ratio is still relatively low. Existing material largely lives in the land of hearsay and individual experience. It’s still mostly surface-level blog posts and a few (not terribly deep or thorough) books. That said, there’s emerging research (which we’ll review!) and enough people out there who’ve been doing this that we’ll be able to dig deeper and pool that knowledge for you to use.

What would be in it

The focus of this Guide would be on hiring, managing, and outcomes for people managing remote teams (vs. for people who are remote, though there will be plenty of places that will come up regardless). Topics likely to include:

  • Core concepts.

    • Remote vs. distributed vs. virtual.
    • Synchronous vs asynchronous communication.
  • Different flavors.

    • Old company experimenting slowly.
    • Company with an existing mix of on-site and remote.
    • Moved to all remote.
    • Remote first.
  • Tools and technology.

    • Remote office setups.
    • Communication and collaboration.
    • Project management.
    • Video.
  • Managing remote teams.

    • 1:1s.
    • Setting goals.
    • Communication styles and preferences.
    • Evaluating performance from afar.
    • Motivating remote people and teams.
    • Avoiding burnout.
  • Hiring remote teams.
  • HR considerations.

Compensation

Why this topic

Compensation is near and dear to each of our hearts—we all have to get paid, after all. For employees, compensation is often shrouded in mystery. Negotiating compensation is full of tar pits. For employers and managers, getting compensation right can be the difference between an underperforming team and a team that exceeds expectations. No matter whether you’re interested in negotiating your own compensation or you’re interested in creating a fair and transparent compensation plan across your organization, everyone at a company has a stake in understanding how compensation works.

Compensation can also be role-specific. Sales people get compensated differently than engineers, for example. Once we have Guides for employees and employers, we’d love to do “add-ons” for specific organizations like sales departments or executives.

Who it’s for

We’re excited about publishing content on compensation for two audiences:

  1. Employees
  2. Employers and managers

How it will be helpful

This Guide may be more than one Guide. It might be one for employees and one for employers. Maybe we’ll wrap them up together.

For employees, this Guide will:

  • Help you negotiate your compensation when you start a new job.
  • Help you learn how to ask for a raise.
  • Help you navigate tricky situations where you feel the compensation policies are unfair or poorly set.

For employers and managers, this Guide will:

  • Give you the tools to create a clear compensation policy.
  • Enable you to solve most compensation problems once, not over and over again.
  • Help you hire and retain the best people.

What would be in it

  • The basics of compensation (cash, equity, benefits, and more).
  • Common pitfalls.
  • Creating a company or team-wide compensation policy.
  • Transitioning to a new compensation policy.
  • How to handle situations like when an employee asks you to match a competing offer.

Growth Marketing

Why this topic

Many entrepreneurs at small companies and teams at larger companies struggle to get the word out about their products. This resource will focus on effective growth marketing that doesn't sacrifice long-term business health for short-term schemes. We want to create a comprehensive and helpful resource to growing a business that helps marketers grow in a way that doesn’t sacrifice the long-term health of their business in exchange for short-term growth schemes.

Who it’s for

If you’re a founder or employee at an early or growth-stage startup whose job involves growing usage, revenue, or users, this will be the Guide for you.

What would be in it

  • Acquisition, activation, retention, referral, revenue.
  • Paid vs. unpaid acquisition.
  • Marketing channels.
  • SEO.
  • Partnerships and business development.
  • Email marketing.
  • Growth marketing tools.

Career Development

Why this topic

Each of us will spend somewhere around 90,000 hours of our lives at work. Some of the most important decisions we make are around choosing, building, and switching careers. At some point, we will all feel desperate for advice, and the world is full of folks willing to lend a hand and share some wisdom. We believe there’s a wealth of wisdom out there on this subject, and millions could benefit from reading a collection of how this stuff works.

Who it’s for

This Guide will be most beneficial for those who are early in their careers. That said, some people have a 10-year career and decide to switch careers. Some further will change careers every decade of their lives!

What would be in it

There are so many directions career development could go. We may find we want to publish an entire series of Guides on career development. Here are a few areas we’d like to cover under this umbrella:

  • Choosing a career.
  • Finding a mentor.
  • Switching careers.
  • Individual contributor vs. manager paths.
  • How to choose the right company to work for.
  • Traditional careers vs. non-traditional careers.

Becoming a Software Engineer

Why this topic

Software engineers hold some of the most highly paid and essential roles in modern companies. Yet navigating the path to getting a job as a professional software engineer is difficult, especially for top-tier roles and for those starting the journey.

Who it’s for

Millions of people worldwide would like to become software engineers, or have an engineering job but would like to have a better role. This Guide is for anyone who aspires to be a software engineer and doesn’t know where to begin, as well as those who are already software engineers but wish to make good career choices.

What would be in it

  • Picking the right role for you.
  • Kinds of training appropriate for different roles.
  • Joining a big company or a startup.
  • Interview preparations.
  • Compensation and roles.
  • Negotiations and joining.
  • Career development paths.
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The Holloway Guide toRaising Venture Capital

Andy Sparks and over 30 contributors
Over 14 hours read time, plus 750 linked references and resources
A current and comprehensive resource for entrepreneurs, with technical detail, practical knowledge, real-world scenarios, and pitfalls to avoid.