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Kaleb M
Kaleb M

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Help Out Fellow Community Members by Answering 2 Questions!

Hello ladies and gentlemen,

Becoming a Tech Lead!

I recently had the opportunity to take on a new challenge in my career - tech lead! This new role will come with managing people on the team, compared to being a mentor or coach as a Sr. Software Engineer.

I'm very excited to take on the new challenge, and am looking forward to growing both myself and the people on the team!!

Using the Inversion Mental Model for Better Outcomes

In one of Charlie Munger's speeches, he mentions that many of times problems can be solved using inversion instead of forward thinking. His example given was, if you want to help India, the best question isn't asking how can I best help India, instead one should ask - what are the things that hurt India the most. Those are the things to focus on to improve it!

As I was sitting there taking in life in the big apple, deciding on how to best succeed in my new role, I thought to myself - how could I be a great tech lead?

That took me right back to Charlie Munger's Inversion example about India.

In addition to asking how can I be a great tech lead, I believe it makes sense to invert that for qualities one should avoid as well!

With that being said, I would love some help!

The Questions

If you've had tech leads, managers, and mentors both good and bad, please answer the following questions in the comments!

1. What were the qualities you most admired, respected, and appreciated from a tech lead you loved working for?

2. What qualities did you find the most disheartening, frustrating, or disappointing that you hope to never have in a future tech lead?


I'll be trying to take a look throughout the day at this, and join in the discussion as much as a possible. Thank you!!

Top comments (5)

kinas profile image
Angelika Kinas • Edited

What were the qualities you most admired, respected, and appreciated from a tech lead you loved working for?

  • listening competence (you need to be able to listen to the problem the engineers you manage do have and react upon them)
  • reactiveness --> the team is the most important thing, if there is a problem for the team, solve it
  • being humble (you are lead, doesn't mean that you know everything, you can definitely still learn from a junior)
  • be open / don't judge show your engineers that they can come to you anytime and talk to you about anything
  • make your engineers happy (already said that: your team is the most important thing!) you can make people happy by: work life balance (but not just talk about it, live it), personal relationship, team building things (escape room, improv theatre,...)
  • trust your team!! If you don't trust that your team works how they promised to work, then you have trust issues. And they are not gonna be solved by asking why something is not done. you should trust that they also want the product to be amazing and giving their best. And if they don't give their best, you should rather observe... maybe there is a underlying problem?

What qualities did you find the most disheartening, frustrating, or disappointing that you hope to never have in a future tech lead?

  • don't put pressure on the team (you will get deadlines from your manager and as you are a lead now, you have to meet the deadline. but rather than putting pressure on the team you should motivate the team. they should see the same vision you do. I can tell you pressure will create a really bad mood and as developers get jobs fairly easy they will be gone soon if you take away their evenings)
  • NEVER ask "why"! This word should be banned from now on in your dictionary. If you ask someone "why" they did this and "why" this is not working, you make them become defensive. That's super super bad! Rather ask: "How will the action done here help with this and that", "How did this error occur", then you search for the reason and the developer doesn't think it's his or her fault. (learned that from my VP, best tip in the world!!!)

There are so many more things :D
Just need to work now!

I wish you all the best!!
And congrats! Good job :)

avatarkaleb profile image
Kaleb M

This is so awesome thank you so much !!!!!!!!

avatarkaleb profile image
Kaleb M • Edited

I thought I'd start off the discussion / comments by responding to my own questions!

Question 1.

Vulnerable - shows that even though as a leader, you can approach them and learn together, all while making some mistakes a long the way to grow from

Confident - Being able to guide the way for the team, giving you direction you can trust, and also admitting when they don't know something really gives me respect to grow and work with them

Great communication - I feel that when a team knows the direction, the standards, the process, and the goals, they can better work together when trying to accomplish them! Also, for those tough conversations or career sessions a good communicator makes sure you feel heard!

Question 2.

Arrogance - I feel arrogance in leadership doesn't work well, because it can cloud judgement, alienate, people, and bring unhealthy competitiveness into the team. Confident is good. Arrogance not so much.

Unorganized - It's tough to feel like you can exceed expectations if there are no expectations set to exceed. It can be challenging to accomplish goals if they aren't defined. I feel that leaders help communicate goals, standards, etc. into the team so they can utilize them efficiently. Albeit, every leader can do this in different ways - documentation, communicating in meetings or MRs, but it is definitely an important part of a good team!

avatarkaleb profile image
Kaleb M

I'm looking so forward to being that leader now :), and will be doing my best to help everyone grow! Totally agree with point #2 and thank you very much !!