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The Road To Technical Team Lead

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You’re a Senior Developer, providing value through producing great code, planning features and by mentoring junior team members. You may be considering how to progress your career - if you want to stay technical rather than move into management then the role of Technical Team Lead is worth considering.

The technical team lead is responsible for the technical leadership of one or more teams. Typical responsibilities include:
- Coding: importantly, Technical Team Leads still spend a large portion of their time “in the code”
- High level planning of product architecture and features
- Making or adjudicating technical decisions that affect the whole project or team
- Taking care of your team (socially, managing growth and through learning and development)

This talk covers what a day in the life of a Tech Lead is like, which skills you should develop and which opportunities within your business to pursue to help you reach your goals. I’ll use examples from my own experience and that of fellow leads to help you make the progression to the Lead role.

Published in: Technology
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The Road To Technical Team Lead

  1. 1. The Road To Technical Team Lead Ben Andersen-Waine
  2. 2. IMO - …
  3. 3. What is a Technical Team Lead?
  4. 4. A leader, responsible for a development team, who spends at least 30% of their time writing code with the team. Talking With Tech Leads - Patrick Kua
  5. 5. Also Known As: 
 
 Tech Lead Team Lead Dev Lead Chief Ninja Wizard (gah…)
  6. 6. Hypothesis
  7. 7. The Audience
  8. 8. What do I enjoy? • Coding • Solution Design • Testing • Mentoring • Speaking At Conferences • Documentation (no, really)
  9. 9. What do I not enjoy? • Admin • Meetings • Excel
  10. 10. Line Management
  11. 11. • Admin: • 1/1 • Yearly Appraisals • Holidays / Sickness • Hiring • Reporting Up Responsibilities Of A Line Manager
  12. 12. Traditional Org Chart
  13. 13. Traditional Org Chart
  14. 14. “Sounds Like You Just Want To Be A Dev”
  15. 15. What Do I Want? • To take a leading role in technical decision making • Become a technical specialist • To contribute to the development of co-workers • Not to get bogged down in management
  16. 16. The Rest Of This Talk: • Activities of a Tech Lead • The Skills You Need • How To Get There
  17. 17. Head Of Software Development
  18. 18. A Day In The Life Activity % Day 
 (7.5hrs) Week
 (37.5hrs) Coding 40% 3 15 Design 30% 2.25 11.25 Integration 15% 1.125 5.6 Misc 15% 1.125 5.6
  19. 19. Activities
  20. 20. Coding
  21. 21. Interruptions Jason Fried: Why Work Doesn’t Happen At Work
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XD2kNopsUs
  22. 22. Coding - Interruptions Pair Programming
 http://www.extremeprogramming.org/rules/pair.html

  23. 23. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/af/Pair_programming_1.jpg
  24. 24. Coding - Interruptions Pair Programming
 http://www.extremeprogramming.org/rules/pair.html
 
 Visual Do Not Disturb
 
 The Personal To Do List
  25. 25. Coding - Interruptions Pair Programming
 http://www.extremeprogramming.org/rules/pair.html
 
 Visual Do Not Disturb
 
 The Personal To Do List
  26. 26. http://66.media.tumblr.com/784ff88c5b5c0deeb50069808ec1f75e/ tumblr_na5w8oljnX1qc0howo5_1280.png
  27. 27. Coding - Learning Mentoring
 https://blog.engineyard.com/2013/php-mentoring-software-apprenticeship Code Reviews Collective ‘Mobbing’ 
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_pvslS4gEI
 
 Establish The Culture

  28. 28. http://mobprogramming.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/MobPhoto_2012_11_14.jpg
  29. 29. Coding - Learning Mentoring
 https://blog.engineyard.com/2013/php-mentoring-software-apprenticeship Code Reviews Collective ‘Mobbing’ 
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_pvslS4gEI
 
 Establish The Culture

  30. 30. Design
  31. 31. Design Leading White boarding Sessions
  32. 32. Design
  33. 33. Design Leading White boarding Sessions
 
 Creating Expressive Documentation
  34. 34. A Picture Speaks A Thousand Words
  35. 35. Design Leading White boarding Sessions
 
 Creating Expressive Documentation
 
 Establish The Culture
  36. 36. Integration
  37. 37. Integration Broad understanding of product architecture
 
 High level view of all work streams
 
 Deep Knowledge of well know problem areas
 

  38. 38. Misc
  39. 39. Skills
  40. 40. People 1 - 1
 
 Active Listening
 
 Giving Feedback 
 https://www.infoq.com/presentations/feedback-models-techniques 
 
 1 - m
 
 Speaking Publicly
  41. 41. Written Communication Harrie Verveer - Software Architecture In An Agile Age
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LK4l8_fzFmk
 
 Narrative Documentation
 
 UML / Sequence Diagrams 
 
 Swagger / API Blueprint
 
 Network Diagrams

  42. 42. How Do I Get There?
  43. 43. Get The Skills / Demonstrate Competence “Act Up”
 
 Find A Mentor
 

  44. 44. What Kind of Organisation Am I In? Traditional vs Flat Structure
  45. 45. Flat Structure Value autonomy over hierarchy Venerate contribution to the product over job title

  46. 46. Flat Structure - Spotify https://ucvox.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/113617905-scaling-agile-spotify-11.pdf
  47. 47. “Freedom And Responsibility” http://igormroz.com/documents/netflix_culture.pdf
  48. 48. “Why does your desk have wheels? Think of those wheels as a symbolic reminder that you should always be considering where you could move yourself to be more valuable.” http://www.valvesoftware.com/company/Valve_Handbook_LowRes.pdf
  49. 49. Traditional Hierarchy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matrix_management
  50. 50. Traditional Hierarchy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matrix_management
  51. 51. Having The Conversation Know What You Want
 
 Express It Well
  52. 52. Final Thoughts
  53. 53. Developers
  54. 54. Decision Makers
  55. 55. Questions
  56. 56. https://joind.in/talk/38014 Feedback Please :)

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