Looking for Tech Lead resources (books, sites, etc.)

val_baca profile image Valentin Baca ・1 min read

First, to be clear, this is not about becoming a Manager.

My career path is trending toward becoming a Technical Leader. In essence, this is similar to what others call a "Senior Engineer." To be clear, this is NOT moving into a management or technical project management role.

Rather, it's more of a leadership software engineer role. I would still be an individual contributor, but would dial-back my Lines of Code per Day in order to both lead technical projects and influence other teams in my organization.

What I'm looking for is resources that focus on being an effective leader in the tech field -- especially books, I love to read. This can also include developing interpersonal skills ("soft-skills"), but also requires strong high-level tech skills, like designing service architectures.

Most "leadership" material out there is only for management, as that's what people consider "leadership" in most organizations. So I'm looking what's been useful to others in a similar role.

Here are some examples that I've read that come to mind, by topic:

Posted on Sep 20 '18 by:

val_baca profile

Valentin Baca


Sr. Software Engineer & Tech Lead (SDE3) on AmazonSmile. 9 years of experience, primarily at Amazon.com My posts are my own opinions and do not reflect my employee's opinion.


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SE Radio did an interview a couple years ago with a Patrick Kua, a Tech Lead from ThoughtWorks. I thought it was a good discussion. He also wrote a book on the subject.


Hope this helps!


Seconding this, Patrick Kua has some great insights and reading his book was really helpful for me when I first became a Tech Lead.

He also has some good smaller posts on the topic (also on the ThoughtWorks blog):
5 Tips for Being an Effective Tech Lead
Three Common Mistakes of the First Time Tech Lead


This looks spot on. Thanks!


I always suggest this book "The Servant" about servant leadership: smile.amazon.com/Servant-Simple-St...

This is about being a leader instead of being a boss, and it's not specifically about being a tech lead but more about soft-skills which are useful anywhere else in your life. For me it was a life changer.


What a great recommendation! It was one of the reasons I decided to create softstuff.tools . So many people end up moving into management and don't get a chance to learn about servant leadership.


Hi Valentin,

As someone who has made a career out of technical leadership, I can't help but warn you: a big part of that job will be management. ;-)

That means most of those management books will be useful to you as well. If you haven't read the classic "The Mythical Man-month" yet: that's a great place to start.

I didn't know "On Writing Well" and it's on my to-read list now. Thanks!


I am reading this book and its awesome: amazon.com/Managers-Path-Leaders-N...

It might not be exactly what you are looking for, but I think its worth reading anyway. Chapter 3 is dedicated to being a Tech Lead.


I found an earlier blog entry here to be extremely helpful: dev.to/lpasqualis/11-top-responsib...


amazon.com/Debugging-Teams-Product... is really good. It focuses on the culture teams come from rather than symptoms.