I’ve been an iOS engineer my entire career. How can I move away from being tied to iOS?

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Senior Engineer at Series C Startupa year ago

I’ve been doing iOS development for the 3 years I’ve been with my company. Now that I’m trying to become a lead engineer, I’d like to broaden my impact beyond iOS and help with other parts of the stack.

Since I’m a senior engineer, I now have access to other code repositories in the company. How can I start to go beyond iOS and have impact across domains?

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    Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    a year ago
    • Just to lightly question the premise: it’s totally fine to stay deep in iOS, if you feel like you can continue to have the most impact there. You can have a lot of career success if you become the iOS expert. However, I’d still try to have an opinion on other tech stacks.
    • If you do want to switch, the benefit is that you’re at a small company, so it should be easier to move around. I’d recommend trying to have impact on teams that are most adjacent to you, where you likely already have relationships, e.g. the Android team or release engineering team.
    • The human side of ramping up on a different codebase is really important. It’s often much, much easier to talk to someone for 30 min compared to spending days trying to make sense of the code on your own. One way to add value while you ramp up is to document where you got stuck, and then improve the documentation.
    • Attend meetings for the adjacent teams, try to find patterns or problems, and then propose a way to fix it. Rather than the other team doing you a favor, the dynamic should be that you’re doing something substantial for them, which will meaningfully improve their quality of life.
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