Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

I have been leading distributed teams for Automattic since 2011

Not my first rodeo.

In 2004 I started a side hustle.

Every evening, I led a team, also distributed internationally.

Like we do at Automattic:

Like at Automattic, we had multiple communication channels.

We had a lot to do.

You may have heard of some of our achievements:

If you are not familiar with these names, these are a few of the 10 or 25 men raids that my World of Warcraft guild and I beat over the few years I was a guild officer and raid leader.

It was my closest experience leading a distributed team before joining Automattic.

I learned that the most direct path to a result often isn’t the shortest.

Specifically, people are much more efficient when they do something they enjoy. In a game such as WoW, this is crucial as people play to enjoy the game, and nothing is stopping them from leaving if they don’t. The need to pay rent changes the equation in a professional setup.

The reality, though, is that money is a weak incentive.

Curiosity, learning, agency, recognition, and ownership are essential to building strong and lasting teams and successful guilds and raids.