I was working as a Senior Engineer on an e-commerce related project with a team of 10 people and the CTO of the project asked me if I would accept a promotion to Head of Development and showed me the challenges I would face in the short/medium term.
Why me? — I asked, and the answer was short: because you are the one who is always suggesting new things, trying to improve the quality of the project and you have the necessary technical knowledge for the job. And it was true. I was always trying to change people’s mindsets to use best practices instead of doing things the way they always did. So, with the promotion I thought I might have the opportunity to improve the company’s practices and also the quality of our project and I accepted.
I do not regret it. I had the opportunity to learn so many things that if I had stayed on the technical path, I would not have known about them.
For almost 2 years I reported to the CEO of the project and I had to deal with a guy without technical knowledge and manage to make him understand why we had to implement unit tests in a project and we need to have space in the roadmap for that. I’m not writing this in a bad way. I thank him for the challenge that these 2 years of work have given me because they have made me improve my skills, especially my social and communication skills. During that time, I recruited people, fired people, managed the international technology budget (tech tools used in different offices around the world) and proposed roadmaps among other things, and still found time to code. The teams I had were great (we all think our teams are great!), they support me in everything but I start to get tired of the role because every week I have less time to code and I don’t like to do the other things, such as performance reviews and budget management.
I got an offer to take on a manager role with just one team, and I thought I would have more time to code, so I took it. I was so wrong…
Moved to a new company, started to understand the business and technology stack, networking, still roadmaps and capacity plans to do, performance reviews and feedbacks. After a year and a half, I decided that enough was enough and I decided to look for something technically.