Have you, Sandor, really read that book? - you might ask if you know me or you simply know what path I’m following. A hint: the technical path. Yet, my answer would be, of course, I had and it was great!
What it is about?
It is a map helping you navigate at the different positions on the way up to the top of the software teams management. So this book is not just about any type of managers, it is dedicated to managers working in software development. It covers position starting from the tech leads, through mid-management up to the position of CTO or VP of Engineering.
I’m not changing my mind. Even though I code so little nowadays at my job that maybe it would be more beneficial to convert into a manager and make more money while I’d have more authority on improving our engineering practices and developer environment that I’m most concerned about.
But yet, I’m not reading this book to become the next superstar tech leader. I read it because I think one of the most important skill in order to succeed at a corporation - even (or mainly?) as an individual contributor is to know how to manage your manager. I don’t mean it in a Machiavellian way. I’m a nice guy. I mean it in a way that if you understand what are the main concerns of your boss or those of the boss of your boss, you’ll have a much higher chance to succeed in your goals. I’m generally quite good at this skill I think and I want to further improve it.
While this book serves as a guide for the managers, it helps you too to understand what tasks’ they have to deal with, what are their main concerns. And let’s not be blind, to become a senior engineer or software architect, you don’t just have to be able to write good code, but you also need some leadership and management skills. This book can help you to steal some of their tricks and techniques.
How did I start to use what the book teaches? It also covers a bit of how to be a good mentor. As I started to mentor our latest newcomer, using this book, I try to guide or check-points which I started to organise. During the first two weeks, we only met sporadically.
It also helps me to understand what good management is and what I value in a manager. I also handed the book to my manager, maybe The Manager’s Path will help him to further improve his skills. Not that he is the worst manager I ever had, not at all, but we are his first team, of course, he has a lot to learn. Like every one of us.
Happy learning and reading!