I’ll save you from Betteridge’s law of headlines right off the bat, my answer is “It Depends”.

In Staff+ circles and conferences like this, you’ll hear a lot about scaling up, handling large numbers of people, and expanding influence - all important skills at large enterprises. But what about scaling down? Are Staff Engineers still useful on a smaller scale? How and where can the same sorts of skills be applied when there are only 10-50 total engineers?

In this post-zero-interest-rate world perhaps there’ll be more organisations not getting on the hyper-growth train and sticking to a more modest headcount - will there still be room for people at those companies to grow into Staff and beyond?

I’ll share some of my experiences from moving to a much smaller company and taking my Staff+ experience with me and share some of the things which are very effective but only possible at a smaller scale.