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Settling in new role after promotion

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Anonymous User at Taro Community9 months ago

I am a recently promoted staff software engineer at a F500 technology company. I am excited about the new opportunities and challenges that this new role brings, but I am also feeling a bit anxious. I am responsible for handling entire projects from start to finish, which is a new responsibility for me. In my previous team other staff software engineers used to work from start to end on the project and I used to assist them.

I am still learning the ropes and I am not able to contribute as much as I would like to in this role. I am looking for ways to settle into this position and have an impact. I am concerned that I will not be able to meet the expectations of my new role and that I will be replaced.

What are some things I can do in the coming months to make a positive impact and to allay my fears of being replaced?

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    Head of Engineering at Capgemini
    9 months ago

    First of all, congrats on the promotion! It's completely natural to feel a sense of excitement along with anxiety to rise to a new level of expectations.

    The #1 thing that has worked for me time and time again is to focus purely on recalibrating your understand around "the rules of the game".

    You are already on the right track since you've seen a shift in the scope you're required to take on. Before diving straight into how you can most effectively solve for this, make sure to thoroughly investigate these other areas so you can fully "recalibrate".

    • Decision making process: this was by far the biggest shift for me when I moved from IC to Management. As you get more senior, you'll be privy to and be involved in many more decisions well ahead of them behind socialized through the broader organization. Figure out how this current works, find what's expected of you here, and seek to understand before proposing any changes. Tie it back to OKRs and ask yourself does it make sense.
    • Stakeholder interactions: your interactions will greatly change as well. This includes the people you used to interact with before you made staff. You'll find that the nature of these interactions will change both based on the topics you need to cover and a likely shift in perception. Pay particular attention to what actions/behaviors are rewarded vs. tolerated vs. discouraged.
    • Establish a peer group / find role models: sounds like you have a few relationships with those at the staff level already within your company. Take the initiative and facilitate an ideas exchange of sorts. Keep this lightweight and low friction to encourage participation. Personally, I'd say at least 30-50% of the solutions I come up with for new problems I encounter was partially/fully "crowdsourced". The more senior you get, the more ambiguity the problems are, so gathering more perspective is increasingly important vs. brute forcing your way to a solution yourself.

    Will Larson cover this topic very well and offers up more tactics on what to investigate, how and why. Although it's for VPE / CTO, I'd say 80% of it is applicable to just about any level.

    https://lethain.com/first-ninety-days-cto-vpe/