Recently Engineering Managers across the industry have been sharing their Manager READMEs. These serve as your introduction to new teams and new hires. If you’re a manager or leader I highly recommend creating your own. Without further ado here is mine.
As your manager, I look forward to getting to know you more through conversations and interactions. To give you a head start in knowing me I’d like to share my philosophies and some information about myself.
I’m here to help you succeed, to provide the vision and context, and to represent you and the team across the company.
DISCLAIMER – This document speaks on my behalf. It does not represent any other manager or team. It is a work in progress and I will iterate and adjust it based on experiences and feedback.
I’m a strong believer in Servant Leadership. I serve you, not the other way around. I’m here to empower you to be your best and to help you grow.
I will always do whatever I can to make myself available for you!
If you need to schedule some time with me you don’t need to ask first. Pull open my calendar (usually up to date) and schedule something in a time that works for you. If you need to reschedule, do it! If you have something urgent that can’t wait, send me a Slack message or a text and I’ll make time.
I believe in autonomy.
- You are on my team because I trust you. You were hired because of your skills, knowledge, and experience. I will not micromanage you, but I do expect results.
- If I believe you’re doing things that may harm your career, I will provide feedback and insight to help you improve.
- Even with autonomy, you should collaborate and get buy-in from the rest of the team.
People & Software
People build software, not the other way around. As such I prefer to adjust process to meet the needs and goals of our people. This frees us to do our best work for the company we work for.
Here is what I value:
- I value transparency and visibility. Communication about what is happening and what is going to happen should always be push > pull.
- I value growth and learning. Fail fast and learn. Experiment with clear goals and tight feedback loops. Stay curious about everything! Help others learn by sharing your own journey and keeping a low ego.
- I value your time and will do my best to ensure it is not wasted. I expect the same from you.
- I value proactivity and self-organization. I have no desire to make every decision myself, I’m sure you don’t want me to either. Go refactor that legacy code to support your feature. Update that library before we get major versions behind.
- I value stability and consistency. Nuff said.
Feedback is vital to success.
I prefer to receive direct feedback. I’m committed to providing you clear and timely feedback, and I’d love it if you did the same for me. You should feel safe giving and receiving feedback in your conversations with me. Neither of us should feel defensive. There should always be an impact as a result.
I work hard to foster great working relationships. I would encourage you to make a strong effort to maintain them as well. Your high IQ will help you with this, but IT WILL NOT BE ENOUGH! You must also be emotionally intelligent (EQ > IQ) and apply time and effort into understanding the people you work with.
These meetings are for you and the agenda is what you make it. What is it you’d like to talk to me about? What’s exciting you? What’s frustrating you? What could I do today that would make you happier or more productive? We don’t need to talk about project status in this meeting, unless you want to. I’ll ask questions and provide feedback along the way, but this is your time.
Work balanced with the rest of life.
I’m a family man and friend to many. I value work/life balance in my own life and yours. My people are able to keep reasonable hours. Unless there is an emergency I don’t expect people to come in super early or stay late into the night.
These are my philosophies.
I can’t wait to hear yours. Let’s talk about them the first chance we get.