I am working in 3 XFN projects (Say Projects A, B ,C) at the same time. Manager wants success in Project A for sure . But he doesn't allow me to be fully dedicated to Project A. He also wants me to come with suggestions to make project A successful. The thing is Projects B & C are huge time consumers and I am left with very little time for Project A. How should I approach my manager to assign me fully to Project A. I have successfully deliver projects in past when I was assigned to a single project only . I am bad at multi-tasking. Project A's success will definitely increase chances of my promo.
From my understanding (and please correct me if I'm wrong):
How to ask for more time for a particular project?
The above being said, I'm going to interpret this as "How can I carve out more of my day for project A?" as opposed to "How can I extend the deadline for project A since I have so little time to work on it?". The latter is generally hard to do, especially at a FAANG company like Amazon, and wouldn't really solve your problem as the project will drag on and be harder to complete in time for the next performance review cycle.
My main piece of advice here is to come to an ultra-clear alignment on prioritization and team impact with your manager. There are some things that don't seem right to me given this information - I believe there has to be at least some misalignment here. In terms of tactics, this means:
On top of all that, another tactical thing I recommend is to come up with ideas on how you can lessen your investment in projects B and C (e.g. reduce scope, pull in another teammate, skip some project meetings). Don't just go to your manager and say "I need more time to work on A" - That is just bringing them a problem (which is annoying). If you're going to bring a problem, strive to bring a solution alongside it as well - This shows that you're discussing in good faith and aren't just complaining.
These aren't entirely related to your situation, I recommend going through them as well since they cover healthy, empathetic communication with your manager around performance:
@Alex . Thanks for you reply .
My challenge is my manager always keeps on changing their suggestion about priorities/promo. The only way my teammates survive are by being super clear and strongly push for one's interests as alignment is extremely difficult with the personality traits which my manager has. Hence I am thinking of going all-in with Project A.
At the moment I am not keen on changing the teams as manager has given positive indicators of him being fully supportive of my promo.
My challenge is my manager keeps changing their suggestion about priorities/promo.
Is your manager aware of this?
Hence I am thinking of going all-in with Project A.
Makes sense - Focus is always good and I've historically seen promotion packets (especially to senior) have a "lion's share" project. I would still align on this with your manager though. If they think it makes sense (at least at 1 point in time, haha), that seems good enough to me given the circumstances.
I am bad at multi-tasking.
I resonate with this a lot, but I feel like some amount of multi-tasking skill is required to be a senior engineer, especially at a FAANG company where XFN cost is high. I would be surprised if you could drop projects B and C entirely, so I recommend coming up with a plan to make sure they're okay as mentioned in my previous comments.
In terms of tactics to increase focus time, I would try these if you haven't already:
Lastly, I also recommend this discussion around optimizing focus time at work.