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Trying to Understand the Dynamics and Feedback Patterns with a Project Lead

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Anonymous User at Taro Community8 months ago

I'm seeking assistance in comprehending the dynamics of my professional relationship with a project lead from another team who is not my manager. While collaborating on our shared project, this individual consistently emits negative energy. They frequently highlight incomplete aspects and stress the remaining workload. Despite offering advice, there seems to be an underlying tone of bossiness. It appears as though they indirectly inquire about my other projects and suggest that the current tasks shouldn't require much time. Furthermore, they mention that they used to handle a significant number of tasks in each sprint when he joined the organization.

I'm genuinely perplexed about whether this behavior should be considered constructive feedback or falls into the realm of toxicity. Could someone kindly provide clarification on this matter?



  • 2
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    Android Engineer @ Robinhood
    8 months ago

    It's a bit hard to have a complete grasp given the vague description, but it seems to me the scenario is that they're unhappy with your velocity and they do a terrible job expressing themselves. If you aren't the only person the project lead is overseeing, you should ask your teammates privately how they feel about your project lead's behaviors. If there's a general negative sentiment that can be documented, I'd look to talk to your manager about your project lead's behaviors.

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    Career Coach • Former Head of Engineering
    8 months ago

    Usually situations like this arise because of misaligned assumptions.

    Here's a checklist for the types of assumptions that could be misaligned:

    • Task complexity
    • Expectations at level
    • Your span of control and span of influence
    • Actual scope vs. scope at point of estimation
    • Amount of dependencies / blockers (includes level of tech debt impeding velocity)

    This aside, I would also try to approach it from a human level and see what might be causing him a lot of stress (also consider non-work related factors). I've learned the hard way that most people are not inherently malicious even though their demeanor / behaviors seem so. It's more likely due to factors such as overwhelm, frustration, ignorance and even poor physical health vs. malice and ill-intent.