Doing this properly is a hard requirement for professional success. As a software engineer in particular, this relationship needs to be carefully navigated to achieve maximum impact.
I have 6 years of experience in the software engineering field, mostly working as a software consultant and at not well known startups. Having done MSc in the field AI, I got an offer to interview with Apple for an interesting role that seemed to have the best from 2 worlds - Software Engineering & AI/ML. To my surprise, after 6 interviews over the span of 2 months and an emotional rollercoaster, I got the job at ICT3 level and moved to another country. I thought I might be underleveled at first, but I kept thinking I actually don’t have experience in AI/ML so they’re levelling me as ICT3 must be right, I also don’t feel like a senior yet.
The situation I’m in now at work is very frustrating and disappointing to me, because of the following :
How can I avoid being assigned a manager who is managing people for the first time? This happened to me and my colleagues multiple times and it was always extremely stressful and unpleasant to work with someone who is managing people for the first time.
I know this would never happen to a staff engineer or a tech lead, but I'm mid-level.
Should I ask to move to another team? What reason should I give for wanting to switch teams?
I'm an E5 iOS at a Big Tech company. There's already an E6 iOS on my team, so it's been hard for me to get enough scope to get to E6. I feel both of us have been fighting for scope. My EM got forced out due to a PIP, so my skip level's temporarily leading the team until he hires a backfill. My skip level knows that I've been frustrated about the lack of opportunities on this team, so he found me a potential E6 opportunity with a different team in our org.
When the new team's skip level found out I could do both iOS and backend, he got very excited and said I could report to the team's EM or him directly. He wants me to mentor junior mobile engineers on multiple teams. He wants me to be the voice for mobile engineers and a thought partner for multiple PMs/teams. He wants me to bridge the mobile engineers to the rest of the new team, which has mostly backend and web engineers. I feel I have better rapport with the new team's M1, but it could be that I was a bit intimidated by the M2. What are the pros and cons of reporting to an M1 vs M2? Would reporting to an M2 make it easier to get to E6?
My technical lead is excellent but not the best communicator, and by that I mean I don't understand what they are saying 50% of the time. I intend this in the most respectful way when I say that I don't understand the punctuation behind their comments and chats. I ask them about X and before I've even finished they shoot out with a response on Y. I don't think they have ever been able to explain anything clearly to me. It's getting to the point where my manager sees me as incompetent (I think) even though it's clearly a lack on their part.
I'm an L3 and they are a critical L5 so the team will never stand up for me but given this economy, I'm starting to get a bit concerned about my career. The difference between their language and others on adjacent teams is like night and day and I'm not sure how to bring this up with my manager without sounding prejudiced.
What should I do to help myself and navigate this situation?
I joined under leveled in a company. My mgr and skip know it.
But they are assigning tasks which are L+2 level. If I am talking promotion they are turning the other way.
How to smartly communicate that I won't do such high level work unless they get serious about promotion?
I've been working as a Sr Fullstack Engineer for 2 years at a Series B startup. I've never received negative feedback, actually, I thought everything was fine until last week. My manager told me that I need to improve my Problem-Solving skills and ask better questions, she kind of implies that I'm a candidate for starting a PiP.
I agree that I struggled in the last 2 months (they switched me to a new project where I'm the only engineer and my manager only has 20% of her time for me), it's been super challenging but I'm trying to make it work. That means that I'm putting in more hours than I should frequently, and I'm starting to feel demotivated and depressed.
Honestly, this feedback took me by surprise, as no one told me anything about my performance during the last two months, I thought that even when I was struggling, they were fine with it because it's a new project and I'm basically on my own and no one is there that I can reach out to for help.
How can I better navigate this? Should I start looking for a new job? I like my job and it would be sad to leave.
What do you think?
I'm currently working on one of my KR tasks, and have pockets of time available as the project involves cross-time zone communication at this stage. My manager wants me to focus on another KR that I have been planned for in Q4. This project is an important part of my manager's project that he started when he was a TL.
My skip manager wants me to focus on a non-KR task of increasing the scope of our team in a different project. If I manage to increase the scope of this project, I can change my KR to this new task in Q4 and lead the whole project is his rationale. I'm confused in this situation as to what to do?
Hello lovely Community! 👋
I am currently working as Senior Software Engineer 1 and I am close to get promoted in the next performance review cycle.
My manager asked me to create a development plan and individual goals to track the progress efficiently.
Wanted to understand how the development plan and individual goals should look like for Senior Engineer?
I’m an E5 at a Big Tech company trying to get to E6. As part of performance reviews, my skip level asked me for feedback on my manager:
Before this, I had 5 managers in 5 months (my current one being the 5th) as we went through a reorg and a lot of leadership departures. I was hired as an E5 and have been at this company for 3+ years. Every time I get a new manager, they say they want to see consistent E5 performance before they’ll give me an E6 opportunity. I feel that this keeps getting reset due to management churn. Are there strategies to mitigate this? For what it's worth, I got Exceeds in the last performance review.
I recently started a new position and I'm facing challenges with my manager's communication style. It's making my onboarding process difficult and I've noticed it's affecting our team's culture.
Environment & Manager:
Speaking with peers, it's clear I'm not the only one feeling overwhelmed. Our onboarding process seems disjointed and the team's morale is low due to constant shifts in priorities. This all seems to link back to our manager's communication style.
While I understand I'm new and might not have the full picture, I believe this issue is beyond just my experience. I'm looking for advice from:
With your guidance, I hope to find a sense of balance and detachment, focusing on my role while navigating these challenges.
I genuinely want to make the best out of my current role and contribute positively to my team. Your insights and advice will be invaluable. Thank you in advance.
Sorry if this seems like a rant. Trying to collect my own thoughts.
I have been at my current company as a mid level backend engineer (a startup - around 10-12 years old, went public recently) for around 4-5 years and have a total of 6 years of work experience.
I feel like there has not been much career growth. Got my first promotion after an year of joining the company and not much thereafter. Thus, feeling very lost about where to go next from here.
In the current climate, we had our recent round of layoffs in the organisation. Also, I don't feel very good about some of the things in the organisation such as the stuff I am working on. I don't feel I am learning enough. It is just business requirement - one after another, that too often getting cancelled. Last project I worked on for 3 months, got cancelled after that due to changing priorities. Stock price is plummeting as well. I feel like the best way forward is to restart my own learning journey - what are your thoughts? I used to be one of the top performers in my current and past company and even got awards around 3 times in last 6 years. I tried to work hard for promotions as well, but even after multiple rounds of my manager asking me to do things such as leading the team, multiple XFN projects, infra level revamps etc. - I did not get a promotion. I asked my manager if there is a list of things I should do consistently for a good enough time and if then, we'll be able to make a case for me. He said, that I am trying to gamify the system, but I was only trying to set goals for me. Now, I feel somewhere midway, I have lost my motivation. Feeling a little depressed and often evade work, just coasting to get by.
I want to take charge of my life again and be positive. Quite often I think about other career choices, but have always been in love with CS (and math in my childhood, particularly due to them being intellectually challenging). Just want to make up for the time I lost, and want to do some things I am proud of. I often think of my life being pointless in last couple of years. And want to get a renewed sense of motivation and be excited for the things I work on.
I feel like joining a fast paced place or somewhere I can learn a lot (even outside of work) might help. Don't feel very happy about my current situation though.
Hi everyone! I want to understand what are some most effective ways to articulate your person goals and growth areas to your manager. What are some questions to consider? How do I measure success?
I want to maximize 1-1s as much as possible and I think this is a good starting point to laydown the roadmap.
I was informed by my previous manager that once we move teams, promo is "reset" i.e. only the work in the new team counts for the promo cycle (despite being on the same job ladder of TSC, DE etc).
I am currently at L4 and the role I am going into is scoped for L5 (they were targeting a L5 hire). Given I am changing team mid-year, I am not sure I can get a rating beyond SI in the Jan GRAD cycle.
What is the best way to work with my manager to secure an L5 promo and what timeline is realistic for this promotion at Google (I was targeting next August)?
What’s the best way to handle a situation as a tech lead when you are under pressure to deliver your tasks and ensure that the other team members are also on track? If one developer slacks and doesn’t meet the deadline, is it automatically the lead's fault, especially if the situation was raised well in advance. If the person continues to under deliver with poorly written code, is it okay to spend time and pair program and get work done just to meet deadlines? Keep in mind that the developer is a junior engineer and requires fair bit of hand holding.
I had to approve a PR, although I was not 100% confident, it wasn’t a breaking code and it wouldn’t have caused any backward compatible issues. I received extremely harsh feedback for approving a sub standard from a peer/colleague. Had I not completed the PR, my manager would have provided feedback on the delayed project, what’s the best way to navigate between two leads or managers who are not aligned and expect different outcomes from the same situation?
There is a policy in my company (Tier 2, in the likes of VMWare etc) that the managers should connect PRIOR to the interview.
I personally think this is discouraging, as the current manager can really screw you over if they want to. My relationship with my current manager is ok. Not great. However, I have been standing up for myself a lot as that is causing some under current on my team and with this manager. I found a fantastic opportunity within the company and want to interview.
How can I strategize given this company policy?
My fear is inform manager -> they tank my performance review / bonus / raise ( it is currently perf cycle now) -> interview reject -> Back on this team.
I need some advice on how to navigate my situation. I have recently joined a staff engineer role and its has been 2 months. My manager mentioned today that I would be put under PIP. He mentioned that there is gap in the expectations.
To give a context, I am the only one person here and everyone else including manager (who is a director) are in different country (in europe), completely different time zone and it has been every hard to get any time from them to discuss anything. I have been left out of important meetings because of the time zone. Now, I am working alone here on a new project independent from others. When I created PRs, they were stuck for ever (sometimes a week or so). I posted in multiple channels, etc. Even sync meeting with team mates sometimes were cancelled because of they were busy and it has been hard. I have raised this with manager but nothing changed. For onboarding, I didn't have a buddy to begin with and manager was my buddy.
I am supposed to talk with HR tomorrow and discuss my options. PIP or mutual termination. I am not sure what should I ask HR and what should I do? Any advice would be greatly helpful.
I have been working on a sister team project for a while which is lead by my skip manager. My manager told me that once I am done with the work in my sister team's project, I could reach out to him for future projects. I want to talk to my skip regarding the same and tell him that I would like to move out of this project as I am done with my work. How do I approach him? Could you please let me know?
I joined a new team a week back and will soon have my first 1:1 with the skip-level manager.
Given that I haven't spent much time to have any feedback on my manager or the org culture and process, what should I discuss to get the most value out of the time?
P.S. I have gone through this question: , and I did found some great insights, but wanted to ask if there's anything more I can do given my position and experience is different.
Do you have to have 1:1 with intern manager weekly or is it okay to just send them an email talking about what you accomplished during the week provided you meet with mentor daily.
How early in the internship do you make your intentions of wanting to get a return offer clear and how would you go about doing so, do you just talk to your manager or your mentors as well?
Hey Everyone, would there be interest in a topic, on how to attract a sponsor who is invested in your growth at least 1/10 as much as we are.
Over the years, I have realized in addition to being sincere and making an impact, we need the right projects to make an impact and the right people to take notice. I feel like I cannot catch a break.
I have been able to uplevel and switch, get an upper level from tier 2 -> FAANG (L5), and stayed there for many years. Thriving. Until my project was canned, and I was laid off.
My current team is at a tier 2 company, and I have already made significant impact, but my manager is hung up on some negative feedback that was given to me early on (3 quarters ago) The current staff even insidiously tried taking away my projects from me. I stood up for myself and got the project back with my managers help.
I have good feedback, on PR, good velocity and mentoring engineers to uplevel. But my manager is still biased.
I strongly believe that actions speak louder than words. Would love to know the series of master classes that can help me with Me and your advice.
Would love to know your thoughts on this when is it time to stay and focus on growth or when is it time to move on and start afresh ?
My eventual goal is L6 at Google / Netflix / Meta - Adjacent
I have been chasing the SDE-3 promotion from last one year. It was denied in the year end review cycle in December.
In this cycle (Jan - June), I have ticked almost all the checkpoints as per the firm's SDE-3 competency matrix and I have a good amount of documentation around it as well which I have submitted to my manager.
I want to let my manager and skip (Director) know that I will leave if I am not promoted in this cycle as I don't think there are any negative data points against me.
Any suggestions about how should I subtly carry out this conversation?
Just got an INCREDIBLE job offer (new company) after being under-stimulated and feeling super unvalued by my current team.
I have completed work on all my projects and have no open threads. My last performance review was strong and in there was a mention of promoting me during the fall cycle.
But I have some questions:
I genuinely hate this place and my manager was a total jerk to me until I learned to just keep my mouth shut and avoid certain conversations. I don't want to be pressed during the exit interview or conversations as I'm leaving and put my foot in my mouth and burn bridges -- especially with everyone and their mom getting laid off right now.
I am 8 months in, and there are only two staff engineers on the team.They are pretty demeaning (I find it almost racial, and sexist) and always try and create a bad perspective of me to management. My manager had no clue what I was working on, and she asked me if I consider myself a senior engineer? (I have been a senior for half my career) Only after I was removed from that toxic person's project, I grew and management trusts me now.
I am not a newbie, I have 11 years of work ex and previously worked at a FAANG, where I got exceptional reviews. I am now in a tier 2 company now, and literally anything I suggest to them is po-pooed.
Something as simple as a suggestion to maintain a on-call log as we are ramping up on releasing a new feature, was vetoed against by these two. Our on-call is dumpster fire, with no one knows what is going on expect these two.
Since these two know the technology well, they can get away with any behavior as managers is under pressure and just want this damn feature to launch. Our team is filled with junior engineers and contractors barring a few Senior engineers and these two.
Every task while planning for JIRA starts with "oh this is verrrryyy easy". But it turns out they don't know sh*t and their estimates and providing context is setting me up for failure. I quickly got hang of it, and figured out how to reach my target in-spite of their mis-doings.
They are rude, degrading (only towards me, I find) and are each other's allies. How do I bring it up to a manager without complaining or sounding emotional (I am a women, so its easy to say, I am overreacting by these two, I DO NOT trust them).
I don't want to run away, but stay strong and prove to them and management my caliber. But this also makes it harder to grow on this team.
Manager says that I have not been meeting expectations of my role while my teammates do not agree with his comments.
He writes email after our 1-1 meeting every week with not meeting expectations claiming that I did not deliver on time while another staff engineer on the team told me 1-1 that I have set the example for others in the team with my deliverable.
I have met 1-1 with other senior engineers in the team and all of them have told me that I am clearly meeting the expectation of the role but my manager always seems dissatisfied with what ever task I do. Am I being managed out?
This manager joined the team 6 months ago. The manager who hired me left the company.
What should I do?
Current level - SDE II
Total comp - 240K
Hello Taro community,
I hope you're all doing well. I have a question and would greatly appreciate your insights and guidance.
Background: I joined the company last year (ex-FAANG) as an L5 level and have been actively involved in developing internal tooling for a new product. Recently, while exploring our growth and levels documents, I came across our internal rubrics that outline the expectations at each level.
Situation: After identifying a gap between my current level and the staff level, I expressed my interest to my manager. As a result, I am now leading a team of five individuals in the endeavor of implementing automation tooling from scratch. This effort encompasses setting up everything related to automation.
While my background is primarily in development, I possess knowledge and experience in quality as well. Given the broad impact automation can have across the company, I am eager to leverage my expertise and make a significant contribution.
However, I am uncertain if my focus on quality within a developer role might put me at a disadvantage when aiming for a staff position as a developer.
I am seeking guidance on how to navigate the path towards a staff role, either by leading projects to completion (quality) within my team (& across) or by continuing to work on internal tooling rather than customer-facing products.
Or should I pivot to product development tasks - How do I navigate this conversation with my manager about this dilemma?
Lastly, how can I show metrics and impact?
Hi Taro - just wanted to say thank you for the . I was wondering if you could share with the Taro community your thoughts on how managers evaluate their employees in detail (you mentioned some things like internal tools that one could go and see how many PRs, discussions, comments someone had in Github/JIRA and who all were at the top of that baseline followed by the bottom rankers; so I would like more specifics if possible).
Although no one likes it, it would be good to understand how "stack ranking" works at FAANG - and how some managers evaluate on this criteria, despite it being a practice that sucks. In this way I can just be more sure I'm hitting a baseline - even if it's invisible because I can take daily steps to work on my own visibility and perceived performance.
I feel like the biggest challenge right now is getting critical feedback from a manager / org (and it sounds like some companies in the FAANG space are pretty awful about it). E.g. I read about a Redditor who got let go without much notice because they weren't up to par (decided by a skip level manager) in terms of their code and daily output (while the direct manager and everyone else had been communicating often that this employee's performance was great). But this goes back to the idea that 'great' is 'average' lately, and it's way harder to hit exceeds and greatly exceeds on performance.
Thank you in advance!
I have 12+ years of experience and would like to move to management ladder. I have been working with my manager for over a year to get there.
Couple weeks ago I got to know that my manager is leaving the company. I am worried that with his departure all the effort I put in over the last one year would be wasted. My manager mentioned that he has recommended me as his potential replacement to his skip(Director) but he(manager) is not sure if the company will back-fill the position or not.
My departing manager gave me the following suggestions so that I stay on track with my career goals:
I have monthly skip level 1:1 & have mentioned this interest of mine(moving to management ladder) to him.
I am not sure how frequently should I talk to VP & HR as well as how to bring this career aspiration of mine to their notice. Should I have monthly sync's with VP & HR personnel too?
I have joined this new company for little less than a year. I had interviewed for a different role but due to certain hiring constraints joined in a different team and role. The team I am in is not very technical, there's a lot of process and grind work that's part of the role. It is rather different from what I have been doing which was essentially automation of manual processes and deployment pipelines using tools and coding.
I had one review till now where I got an average rating, to me it seemed sub optimal given I put in a lot of effort to add value to the team. Some of the comments I received included that I should come up with my own ideas (this was with respect to a manual process that I automated which was lying in the backlog for over two years) and also related to some of the choices I made (manager asked if I want project A or B and I said I'm definitely interested in A).
To be honest, I feel my manager is nit picking and he also trivialized my work by making comments like anyone can code, ideas are important, etc even when no one from the team actively owned to execute the ideas.
I feel my manager doesn't particularly like me due to the above behaviors. In this situation how do I set myself up for a good performance review the next time. I would have considered quitting but I like the vibe of the company and some of the other teams are doing phenomenal work. It was hard for me to get in so even if I quit I don't want to quit without trying first.
In most of my previously held roles I became a go to person pretty quickly and got good visibility. How do I do this here?
I'm an incoming SDE intern and will be joining the team at the end of this month. I'm eager to get started and make the most of this opportunity. Last summer, I feel like I didn't perform up to my own expectations and left some room for improvement. I was fortunately to have a return offer but I think I don't really deserve it. This summer, I am committed to learning from my past experiences and striving to do my best. As part of my preparation, I'm planning to have a meeting with our manager to discuss my goals for this summer.
What should I think about and focus my efforts on when I get a project and a role that's of (1) bigger scope and (2) tighter deadlines than I'm used to?
A reorg has suddenly thrust me into the TL role for a very high-profile project on a new team. This project is part of OKRs 4 levels up the chain and has the eyes of several director level people across different functions. From what I've heard, this project already suffered from "too many cooks in the kitchen" syndrome, and on top of that, this project has delivery date set in Q3, which is quite aggressive from our org's standards.
I've landed in this position because I was transitioning to this team prior to the reorg, AND the EM/TL/PM/2 L5s has been reorg'ed out, and they needed someone who had previously TL experience and was willing to do it.
I've previously TL'ed a team of 4 people, with important but "normal" priority projects. This is clearly a great opportunity for me, but I am afraid I'm not ready to handle it and I'm at a bit of loss as to what I should be focusing most of my effort on. With the tight deadlines I have, I feel like every day will be a battle so any advice on how to approach this will be appreciated.
I have one other L5 supporting me who I trust very much and a new EM who's rumored to be very good. We currently have 4 SWE including me and we'll be getting more at least 4 more engineers, with lots of adjacent teams helping out. I do also have good standing and connection in the org overall and I know how to get a "normal" project in our org over the line (I did an in-org transfer).
Sometimes an engineer might not be performing up to expectations because their manager is unable to provide them clear expectations for their level. If they feel like that's the case in the face of a PIP, what courses of action do they have to push against the PIP?
I recently had a conversation with my manager regarding my work commits every week. It seems like he always downplay me in every one to meet showing me in bad picture. As compared to other folks , I have shown more progress with respect to code commits and tasks completion. He ignore other developers mistakes or issues softly.
How to deal with this scenario?
My team took over a system that we didn't write about a year ago, and it is the only system my team owns. It is a highly critical service in my org.
I was happily making changes to it all of last year, but I broke production twice in a few months, and then almost a third time, and now I have lost faith in my coding ability.
The benefits are that it prevented other teams from experiencing these issues and I took full ownership of resolving them, however, the outages seem to be something that is hanging over my EM's head in spite of it.
How do you get out of this rut?
I'm a tech lead on a long-running project that has gathered momentum over the last couple of months after being in a slow death phase for a many months. Recently, a couple of senior engineers joined the team and we've gotten rid of a lot of things that were slowing down the project. We've managed to hit many awesome milestones on time as a consequence.
The project is nearing it's endgame phase but we've unfortunately hit a snag in this last leg due to which it seems that we'll be missing the last couple of deadlines by a decent margin. Due to the expectations that we've set by consistently delivering on time for all the previous milestones, our manager has suggested "pushing" to meet the last couple of deadlines.
I don't want to ask my team to work overtime or on the weekend to meet these deadlines (especially since we've been doing a great job of turning the project around and delivering on time). How can I push back against it in a manner that does not impact my currently ongoing or future performance reviews?
I joined my team as a new grad engineer a year back. Recently, in my 1:1 conversation with EM, he brought up talks about a promotion to next level and a plan to execute it in next couple of months.
Although, I think I am getting better in my current level, I don’t wish to take on added responsibilities of next level from this year, due to some personal problems.
My question is, how can I communicate this to my EM without coming across as someone who is not willing to grow or worst an employee just quiet quitting?
Also, as someone who is new to the tech industry, what are the disadvantages of delaying your promotion?
We use JIRA for writing up tasks, which the respective engineers always make, but there is no sprint. So, we need more sprint retrospection.
All communications are done very vaguely via a Slack message, sometimes a word with little but no context or a screenshot.
I want you to know that I'm concerned about communicating this request for proper planning with my manager.
tldr: My skip suggested that I come back with Promotion Doc ready by this Tuesday.
Context: My manager was let go in the reduction of force couple of months back and all 7 of us now report to skip. This is the first 1:1 I had with Skip .
She asked me if there is anything she can do as we are overburdened with work and stress is on the rise. In reply , I asked her suggestion on promotion conversations which stopped with my manager's departure. I am SWE L3 working in the team since Jan'22.
Question: I copied the ladder doc for L4 , but I am unable to make a solid doc out of it. Skip said I will have 5 minutes to present and if she likes my doc then she will put my name at the Promotion Board. Any best practices that I should follow?
I have covered the below in my promotion doc:
My previous manager never formally agreed to work on any promotion doc. He did agree that I am working at next level and was always happy with my work. I have watched multiple times, it is awesome!! Except for getting Manager work on a shared doc I have done some of the suggested items already.
For context, I work at Apple
I’m currently having difficulty with my manager, who’s made remarks in front of others and micro aggressions, which goes against the inclusion and diversity values of Apple. My manager has been doing this in my 1:1s as well
I’ve been considering talking to HR but I am worried of any repercussions. I know Apple hasn’t laid anyone off yet but they could and I could be the one in my team to be let go (my team’s headcount increased by one person during the pandemic for context). He’s made references to layoffs in my 1:1s
What’s the best thing to do in this situation? I’ve spoken about this with him in the past
I am a mid level engineer and I work for a manager who has micromanaging tendencies. Some of these tendencies include,
I have a few questions based on the above context.
If you have a new manager joining to manage your team, how can you ramp them up quickly on all the work you have done before them, the impact you have generated, your role in the team.
I have recently been put into a new project by my manager. I dont like the work in the project and would like to change that before 1 year mark. Its been close to 9 months in my current team. There are no experienced ICs in the project and I dont like the working attitude of others. However, I like my manager and have bonding with him.
Q1 Should I move to a new project?
Q2 How to bring this up to my manager and when is the right time?
For me i am looking for promotions. I architected, led a staff level project successfully with 5 engineers working with me over a period of 5 months.
Nor one person had a bad thing to say about me or the project and everyone agrees it was a major step for our team.
To be fair, I had a troubled relationship with a principal engineer who namecalled me in a public meeting with my engineering manager in that meeting and I decided to stop talking to him (i would avoid going to meetings with him instead of confronting him)
The principal engineer gave my managers feedback that I am trying to hoard information.
Now my manager is giving me the feedback that I don't go along well with more senior engineers (which is not true, it is just 1 person). I was denied promotion even though more senior engineers than me who I led are getting promoted.
There is also some resume driven development going on at the management level and pe level which is what I was asking questions about.
This was the reason for strong resistance against me and product.
From my end I have tried to normalize my relationships. But it seems my hard work may be better rewarded elsewhere.
I don't want to say all this but am curious how would one let their managers know that they are looking outside within the company. The reason for letting them know is they will get an email when I apply internally.
As a senior engineer L5 in my company for 1 year, I recently found myself in a new team with a new direct manager but report to the same Director in the same Org due to the recent company restructure/company reorganization as part of layoff changes. My Director and I are the direct responsible individuals for the Backend Platform System for the last 1 year. However, I am finding that a significant portion of my time is being taken up by "glue work," such as onboarding new teammates, updating the Wiki, documenting On-call Runbook, mentoring cross-functional team members, providing code reviews for new developers, and unblocking people in their code development. While these tasks seem important, they are making it difficult for me to focus on my own projects.
In my first one-on-one, my new manager expressed a desire for me to take on new initiatives. I am eager to do so, but I need to be able to focus on my own work to make this possible. My manager understood that the frequent on-call support was a blocker for me and asked me to train and onboard a new teammate to take over the on-call support, as well as field requests from users and help others with their work. However, I have still found myself doing a lot of training and providing support even two weeks since my last meeting.
I would like to hear from others who have found a way to balance these responsibilities effectively. How can I prioritize my own work while still contributing to the team's success? I know this will be a difficult decision, and I'm not sure how to approach it. I'm worried that if I stop doing some of these tasks, it may impact my relationship with my manager and team.
If anyone has faced a similar challenge, I would appreciate hearing about how you approached it. Did you stop doing certain tasks and responsibilities, and if so, how did it affect your relationship with your team? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Due to recent changes in the company (Big Tech), my current manager is moving to a new org and a new manager is brought to manage the team. I really respect my manager and they were amazing at supporting me (helped me grow from E3 to E5 in 2 years).
They mentioned the new team has an opening and mentioned that I'd be welcome to join if I wanted to. The new team is our company's top priority and based on initial understanding, their work sounds very interesting to me. Here are some pros and cons I could think of:
Not Changing Team:
Considering these, I am planning to talk to the senior manager in the new org to evaluate their team and vision. Since this is a unique situation, how should I approach choosing between the two? What kind of questions should I ask? Thanks a lot!
I’m looking for a healthy raise at work of 15%-20%. To that end, I have done 2 things:
1. Shared a file with my manager last week detailing things I have accomplished in the last year and their business impact.
2. Asked my manager in our in-person one-on-one last week for a raise
My manager indicated it will be difficult for me to get a raise, both because raise guidelines are largely determined by how well the company is doing overall and because I got a nice raise last year and so the expectations were higher for me this year.
For background, I work at a big, boring, and bureaucratic finance company. I don’t think I did a particularly stellar job last year, but I benefit from being one of the few technical people on our business team, so am very valuable to the team. As a consequence, I can get away with doing a minimal amount of work, and I generally have a few hours during the day to spend it however I want. I am currently applying to different places, but realistically see if taking 3 months, plus or minus another 3 months till I jump ship. I have it set in my mind to only jump ship for a company which compensates at least 50% more than my current TC (which is low, by industry standards).
My question is, is it worth sending a raise request email to my boss asking him for the 20% raise? I’m leaning towards yes, but the counter would be he is already aware of what I want since I’ve asked him in person and shared my “ego file” with him, so I could be seen as overly aggressive. I would also only be recapitulating what I’ve already said.
The raise request format would be taken straight from Josh Doody:
Thanks for the guidance!
In a lot of companies I have worked, the engg management asks you to trust them blindly but expects you to earn their trust (especially if they are newer in team)
This is obviously not the case with all the management leaders. In some places I have seen leaders placing their trust on new people, in others trust is placed based on title of the people (doesnt matter if you are new or old)
but is it commonplace to have situations where trust is demanded blindly from you but you are asked to earn their trust. I thought trust is a 2 way street
But how have y'all seen trust play out in your situations.
I used to ask a question to filter out managers who would be like trust has to be earned. But in practice I have not seen that work
I was wondering how would one handle situations where a manager makes up a feedback based of half information (or their perception) or even misinformation from others.
There are also no actions attributed to this feedback.
for eg. Person X have to learn how to manage up or navigate office politics or learn how to work well with other. But how? And who are these others?
When asked an example of why this feedback was given, they don't have any good example of what happened ,who said what and why was the feedback not given in the first place.
I know this is not something I can control, and in their mind of course they are giving actionable feedback.
The other part of it when you are surprised by the feedback even after asking for it in every 1:1 before (in my situation my manager was out for most of the time).
It just feels that why did I even work so hard in the first place and a little demotivated.
Data engineer here. Manager is the leading a project which is severely mismanaged and he just demands results. He doesn't plan at all. There is no proper project planning and it is XFN project. If I do project management tasks it saps my energy due to numerous meetings in order to do that. Project has been going on for 8 months. Everyone working knows it is not going anywhere. Just that manager wants us to keep working on it. Even our org doesn't recognize it as a critical project. Problem is continuing to work on it takes time away from other interesting work which has more impact.
What do you suggest? How do you suggest I approach this?
I am a tech lead for my team of 5 engineers. I am also a senior eng intending to climb up to staff level.
My manager is not very vocal or supportive and seems reluctant in terms of helping out a plan for myself. I have been working hard though. How can I work with my manager to create a promotion plan for myself and get buy-in from them?
I am not sure if I should move up the eng ladder or transition to management, but are there any guidelines for creating a written promotion plan and manage up so to speak?
I'm an E5 at a big tech company. I've been on multiple projects where stakeholders waited until the very end of the projects to say, "That's not what I wanted." What can I do to prevent this from happening? I got feedback that I "need to navigate ambiguity". Does "navigating ambiguity" mean somehow predicting that stakeholders want something besides what they sign off on? If so, how do I develop this skill?
This seems to only happen on projects led by E6+ engineers or an M2. I have not had this experience when working with other E5's or more junior engineers.
I work for a company that offers online web and mobile apps for US-based customers. As part of a recent re-organization, all mobile, web, and backend engineers have been combined into a single on-call rotation. Even though most of these 20+ engineers (mobile + Web engineers) have not much context about the backend system, my director wants to alleviate the frequent on-call rotation, and he proposes having a healthy size of on-call rotation that uses the "follow the sun" model approach, which involves training engineers in different time zones to have knowledge transfer about the backend system and potential issues. I'm curious to know how I can effectively onboard and train over 20 web and mobile engineers for the on-call rotation while following this model.
The Backend team has compiled a comprehensive support run-book log for each corresponding issue/alert, which shows the severity, priority, and range of the issue. The on-call rotation involves acknowledging alerts and following the steps outlined in the run-book.
Please note that the support run-book is not a 100% comprehensive source of truth since the production system is integrated with multiple 3rd party APIs and systems, and the backend platform serves as middleware for both mobile and web applications. There may be instances where issues are caused by third-party vendors and cannot be solved by the on-call person.
I would love to hear your thoughts and perspectives on this matter. I'm also meeting with my boss for our one-on-one to talk about his idea. This is still an experiment, but would like to get people's perspective. Thank you!
Got feedback from manager that my rating is just MA and on the border. I was given the context that my project complexity was not that much and it was a lower level project. I worked really hard and was expecting good ratings. What can I do to make sure that I exceeds the expectations next time?
I joined my current company a bit more than a year ago as an L4. Within 4 months, I'd launched a high stakes project, and after some churn in the team leadership, I was put into the role of being a tech lead to my remaining team of L3s.
As a pseudo TL, I did well in the mentorship and technical guidance responsibilities, but my code output dropped drastically (due to my projects being in the design phase which were being done by my juniors with me providing high level guidance).
In the last three months, I suffered some mental health issues. My work productivity dropped significantly during that time. I've been very open with my manager about my mental state throughout this process, and they've been very supportive of the things I need to do to recover. Around this time my team also hired an L5, who is now officially the TL.
Due to my drop in performance in the latter half of the year, I'm afraid my manager won't trust me with important projects. I wonder if I need to again prove my credentials to keep me on track for L5. I feel very low about my software development abilities.
This has made me demotivated and disinterested in my work. I took a couple weeks off, yet I don't feel like going back to work. I'm not considering changing teams due to immigration issues. I also don't want to leave a team on a low.
Any tips on turning around my motivation, and trajectory on the team? What can I change in my mindset and working style to overcome my struggles?
I am an Entry level Software Engineer( SWE 1) in my current team for a year now in a mid sized company. I have a matured tenure( 3 years ) SWE 2 in team who has been wanting to get promoted to a Senior Software Engineer for sometime now.
The situation is, in order for a chance for promotion, this SWE 2 was asked to lead a small feature implementation of 2 people where they ended up missing deadlines twice stating engineering complexity. Due to this situation, whole of the team, including Teach lead and SWE1s have swarmed in to help them meet the deadline which is almost a week from now.
The thing is, this particular SWE 2 has been calling me out in Standup and grooming meeting and in person to EM for not completing my story in time even though I am giving proper updates in standup and Tech lead hasn’t raised any concerns yet. According to this SWE2, the stories I have been working on should be completed in a particular x timeframe because he thinks so. They have not laid out any scope or plan where to make changes for it. Their argument is, unless I complete this task, the whole team is blocked because of me. They made it a point to convey it to EM along with PM. EM reached out to me in frustration and seemed content after I explained him the complexity and was able to deliver it next day morning. I had reached out to other senior engineers on team and they guided me properly to finish this task.
This particular SWE2 again called out my name again in my Tech Leads one of the PR and mentioned that other devs are blocked because of me. Tech lead gave a great suggestion to unblock others ( which he could have asked way earlier and implemented ) and others are unblocked now. When I reached out to this SWE2 asking an estimate for current story, in our 1:1 conversation he mentions go with your speed. We don’t really need your part to be unblocked. It will be a good to have. But he keeps on throwing me under the bus infront of team, EM and PM. This SWE2 lacks technical depth and keeps on checking with me everyday if I need any help. But they can’t explain anything properly and I consider it as a waste of time to even decipher their explanation because it tends to increase my confusion.
If it matters, we have our end year review next week and EM seems to think SWE2 is the one helping me (in fact not at all, can’t even explain a proper code change). This SWE 2 is one of the main reason I was given not meet expectations last time in our mid year review rating. I am scared of how much impact he has because of EM’s calling out, again on my review this year when in fact I have hardly worked with him this year. Please advise how to handle this situation.
I wanted to ask people to how to handle stress at work especially after a company layoff with fewer people around?
Is it a good idea to plan time-off around busy periods at work especially after a tech layoff when workloads may have increased for remaining employees?
Given all of the tech layoff, my company also conducted ~10% layoff earlier this month. I am not directly impacted by the layoff as a Senior SWE. But due to the layoff and reorganization, I found that I have become the official go-to person when it comes to Production system issue for the backend and point of contact when it comes to troubleshooting 3rd party API and production issue triage person.
I just finished my first on-call rotation for production support last week, and it's kind of exhausting when I reported Production Incident that categorized as P1 and P2 incident, which resulted an outage due to 3rd party API. I got a lot questions from Product and Business to get updates on business impacts from this 3rd party API outage issue for the past couple days. In light of this, I found myself really need a break from the exhaust of the work. Any thoughts or suggestions on this?
For context, I work in a tech lead role where I am often making recommendation to my manager regarding the projects coming down the line. The EM has the final say on this, but they respect my opinion on this matter so I don't want to mess this up.
I also have 1:1s with my teammates whom I am responsible for about their career growth goals. My teammates are all the same eng level, but have different levels of competence and desire to learn.
Additionally, I also know it's important for me to leave some room/ambiguity in project investigation stages to allow folks the space to grow, while it's also important for me to take on some challenging work and help our team deliver more quickly. I guess my question is really 2 parts:
I am working on a project with sister team under my skip level manager. My manager does not manage that project. How do I approach him to ask that I want to work on a task with end-to-end ownership?
As a Senior software engineer working at a mid-size tech company, I’m still learning how to properly push back when others Sr SWE & managers or Directors from Web or Mobile team tried to get me to do tasks that do not match my own priority. As much as I like to be nice and support others, I agree that I can only do so much. I brought this up with my direct manager and my Director (L7 Senior Manager & L8 Director), and they told me to loop them in when I face overwhelming pressures from other engineers/ cross-functional teams. My direct manager also told me they wants me to be able to focus on big project initiative, and they see that I am on track to be the Tech Lead given my current trending.
While I do appreciate that my boss gives me words of assurance and direction and offered to step in to fend off those pressures during my one-on-one call, I recognize that I would have to be the person who is good on establish priorities and be able to push back on people. I cannot really rely on my boss to do the push-back to fend off the pressure given that with the recent layoff, we are short on staff.
Wanted to get some thoughts and suggestions on "How can I push back diplomatically against an overwhelming amount of tasks"?
For this upcoming half, I'm working in four different areas: reliability, sourcing, delivery, and datastore table. It just seems like it's too much and I'm not building any depth? Feels like I won't be able to build expertise in anything and be unable to contribute as a good team member if I'm working on everything?
My TL has also informed me they are struggling to scope out work due to a lack of senior engineers. This has resulted in me getting menial tasks such as better engineering work and refactoring in some of these projects (i.e. delivery, sourcing, and reliability). It's great for my diff stats, but I want larger scope and less narrow work to be considered for E4. I'm discussing with EM, but the EM and TL seem like they are on different pages. I'm most interested in sourcing, but seniors are struggling to scope out work.
Any suggestions on what to do here? I feel a bit lost overall and I'm struggling to understand how to get scoped and larger non-menial project work. Should I involve my skip manager here? A couple of questions in this one question but appreciate all the help in advance.
In my last performance review, we discussed me being promoted to an engineering manager role because I'm already doing a considerable amount of what an engineering manager does. However, we had something big happen (good thing for the company but can't disclose yet) so we had to put this promotion on pause until everything settles down. It has been a couple of months since the undisclosable event and I haven't been able to get far in discussion with my supervisor about the promotion and setting a timeline. I could go elsewhere but I do like the company. Is it still too early?
This quarter, my skip requested/ gave me an opportunity to lead an org wide efficiency initiative as we are at risk of hitting quotas for some internal services (he mentioned potential IC6 scope) and it’s quite urgent to act on it. My role is to start and lead a large team of engineers on this initiative which involves tons of direction to ensure our org isn’t over quota. I would look my role as a hybrid of TL+ TPM with following responsibilities: analyzing data to find opportunities, creating roadmaps for the program, supporting engineers for execution to reduce usage, project management, understanding and enforcing processes, building knowledge on internal services, coaching engineers, setting Eng excellence culture within the org. All that to say, given limited time and a need for someone to lead, I will be focusing on direction and delegate all of the execution work to the squad.
I did read some accounts (anon post on WP) where EM and skip aligning on low code out out but the IC5 still got MM at the end because they had only 10 diffs for a half. I don’t want to be in that position.
I joined about 6 months ago and my manager is absolutely great. I don’t have anything where I think they can be better at at this stage. At the current stage, I feel like I have a lot of self improvement to do before expecting anything more from them. What do I say in the critical feedback section for my manager?
I joined a company 6 months back and from start I am noticing that some of the engineers in the team are constantly underperforming and I can hardly see them working on any task. This puts additional pressure on other teammates to perform as we set team sprint goals considering availability of all engineers and we find the team always lag behind the deadlines.
I am wondering what should be the right way to discuss this with my manager during 1:1’s. I don’t want to sound like I am pointing fingers on others.
After this past half (I joined mid-August), my manager is saying I'm working at a meets all (MA) level. Granted, I only joined in the middle of the half, but when I ask him how can I take the next level to be promoted or have an EE or above rating, I get very vague answers with not much detailed support (he's also a new manager and this will be his first PSC).
This past half, we had an expectations doc where it listed each project and the impact it should have. I hit all those expectations, but with his vague advice, I'm not able to create actionable steps for myself for this half to get the promo or higher ratings.
From Taro, I'm learning code quality, velocity, and impact are the most important at my level - which from my feedback, I'm doing well in. What are some ways to take it to the next level? Finish my projects earlier and take on more projects in the half? Feeling a little bit lost so any advice is greatly appreciated!
We are 3 people in my team. I've been at the company for 2 years roughly and my team mates for 15+ years. I'm in a situation where my coworkers do stuff, but stuff that's often completely unrelated to our backlog. One of them struggles with being motivated by the job. Occasionally, a 16-hour job takes a month to complete. Maybe 2. And you never know why or when it will be done. This causes a lot of tension with the product lead. The other teammate (focused on the front end) rarely makes any PRs. I'm not sure if it's due to the fact that they have mostly done HTML/CSS and are unsure of how to navigate the frameworks we use or what it is. Our manager tends to cover for us, but obviously he's not loving this situation. It's been like this for 1–2 years. Now it has started affecting my pay raise, and I'm starting to feel tired of always playing dumb or referring to the other great work that they're doing when asked what my teammates are up to. Both seem to be struggling somewhat with stress and anxiety, so I've tried to be compassionate with them. But what do I do? I want to take ownership of the team's performance, but it's difficult to know what to do. They have the senior roles, and they have most of the ownership of the project, so I also feel weird telling them "what to do," if that makes any sense. The company size is roughly 20 engineers, FYI.
Any advice on how to handle this situation nicely, i.e. making sure we're still friends afterward, would be highly appreciated.
Hi Taro folks,
I’d like to create a doc to track my deliverables across engineering axes to make my work easier to see for my manager. This should also help with arguing for promotions down the road… does anyone have a good format for such a doc? FYI: engineering axes include project impact, people, direction, engineering excellence, etc.
My manager and I have been owning the on-call rotation for the backend/platform for my company's flagship product that we launched recently. The rotation of 2-3 engineers is hectic and overwhelming, and my manager and I have brought up this issue, and finally got the acknowledge from the rest of the organization that more engineers needed to be added into the on-call rotation to form a healthy on-call? Is 8-10 engineer on-call rotation a healthy rotation?
Apologies in advance for a long question. Not sure how to ask this question without providing deeper context.
I’ve been working with my current manager for the last 1.5 years. While they have recently helped me get promoted to Senior, it’s been a constant struggle. I dread our 1:1 almost every single week because it always run overtime and we are often still not on the same page.
I see two major issues that haven’t notably improved in the times I’ve reported to them.
(1) My manager isn’t able to coach me, or any of the SWEs on the team. My manager doesn’t seem confident when we have career discussions - I recently asked them what they thought was the difference between good TL and a great one, and they struggled to coherently answer this. Instead, they said they would know better after the next performance calibration. Additionally, none of my teammate has gotten proper coaching either. For example, a teammate struggled to submit code due to their poor code quality and thus had low CL velocity, so my Manager simply told them to submit more CLs, which only made them more stressed without a legitimate way to improve.
(2) My manager lacks technical understanding of our projects and constantly pushes for speed. My manager was externally hired, and to this day, they don’t really understand the complexity of the work our team does. I understand EMs don’t need to contribute code directly, but my manager almost always underestimate how complicated the projects our team takes on are. As engineers, we frequently have to defend our timelines, which is not only frustrating but also pressures some teammates to favor suboptimal design or hastily done CLs that just causes even more churn.
The weird part is, my manager often seem unaware of their own actions, and when I talk to them about these issues, they are always receptive to feedback and seem willing to improve. However, I simply haven’t seen enough improvement in the last 1.5 years.
I could leave, since this is having an impact on my emotional well-being. But I do have good standing w/ my own team and the overall org, and I want to use this situation to learn as much as I could. I know that I myself have a lot to learn as a tech lead (Thanks for , it’s really helpful), and I know I can probably get a bit ahead of our projects and start estimating/de-risking earlier, so my Manager doesn’t get overly aggressive with timelines. I know I can also take this chance to more closely mentor my teammates and help them succeed, since they aren’t really getting it from our manager.
I want to stay, but is it the wrong decision because I have little career support from my manager? If I do stay, what should I focus on so I can really help my team and at the same time learn something valuable for my career?
I want to give feedback to my manager.
This person just joined the company as my manager.
So far as my manager, this person has been nothing but helpful.
I only have good things to say. Is that normal ? How can I share more
I have a busy senior/manager. We used to have 1-1s twice a week, and now I'm lucky if I even get a single 1-1 every other week. I understand that it's because he has a lot of responsibilities (e.g., coding, managing, scrum'ing) and end-of-year deadlines.
Here are some things I've done to make up for the lack of 1-1's:
Does anyone else have a busy senior? Should I be doing anything else? Thanks!
I ran into this issue a few times so far:
I'm the middleman, bouncing back and forth between solutions. Getting blocked at the PR level (sometimes before that too) by either stake holders.
It's demotivating, I do not get things done quick.
What should I do?
I have been doing good at my current company, been here for 3+ years working initially as an Entry Level, then promoted after an year to a MidLevel Software Engineer. I have been receiving "Exceeds Expectations i.e. 4/5" rating since the beginning and "Superb i.e. 5/5" rating once.
I applied for international relocation to Singapore back in July. The manager and skip mentioned that while cost cutting is going on, they are making an exception for me and it should be processed completely by initial weeks of January 2023. In times of layoffs, and especially with my company's stocks not doing that good, I am afraid if it could lead to getting laid off. This is causing me a bit of anxiety.
Although it is being mentioned by leadership that no layoffs are happening, we are seeing projects getting cut off, rigorous re-orgs happening, and entire focus of the organisation is on cost saving, which I feel is great especially in current times.
I started the conversations for relocation when times were going good in terms of offers being posted in the market. The teams were thriving as well in terms of work. But by the time entire process got over, it seems the situations have changed. What should I do?
To add on, another thing I did sometime back was to share with my manager on how I am performing several roles of the next level and how it can be used to further the cause of promotion in the upcoming performance reviews. I tried to break down the career ladder doc into key umbrellas of behaviours needed, and assigned the initiatives I delivered under those. Now afraid if this was another way I shot myself in the foot by asking for more in times of cost-saving and probably being conservative. Please assist with your advice.
How to best answer this question in quarterly discussion with manager? Things are looking good on personal level. On team level also project plannings are seems to be aligned with team goal. How can I add value to this question?
What concrete things do I say, in a conversation with my manager to "set expectations"?
Do I say something like "I would like to ____ expectations this quarter, is it sufficient to complete project A & project B?"
What if I am new to the company, and unable to contribute meaningfully to a significant project, or there is downtime when no projects are available?
Can I say I'll fix some unknown volume of bugs this quarter?
I am usually very competitive and while I love my friends, I have this internal push to always do better than people around me. I got promoted to SWE II within a year in 2021 and I was so proud of that. However, this year my manager changed and without really knowing or understanding me, he gave me the feedback of "didn't meet expectations" in our annual performance review in Feb. I had full plans to change my company soon since I didn't feel supported by my manager. However, my father fell incredibly ill in May (still is) which canceled all my plans as I moved back home to support my family.
I have a feeling my friend who is on a different team than I am (but reports to the same manager) might get promoted to senior. She deserves it. She got different opportunities than I did but I can't help but feel a pang of jealousy knowing that all I want this coming Feb is "meets expectation" rating while my friend might get promoted. Another friend of mine switched to a company that seems incredible but I somehow feel "behind" in my career despite knowing that I will meet the career goals I have next year. I am already a million times a better software dev than I was beginning of the year. I have close relationships with my colleagues but how do I focus on my own lane and not compare myself to others?
I'm mid level, new to the company.
I got assigned a chunk of a bigger project owned by a staff level engineer, let's call him X, who has worked on the product for a long time and has a lot of context.
Things that were new to me: the language, the tool chain, product context. The codebase is several years old.
My skip level manager (1 level above my direct manager) once encouraged that I should aim to finish my work in less than 2x the amount of time it would take X to do it (but besides this I received no pressure, or reminder to push for this target from managers).
This was overly ambitious. I worked longer hours and harder than anyone around, including weekends but still could not finish it in 3x the amount of time initially estimated.
The staff engineer overestimated what I can do too. He's very willing to explain but I had a hard time mapping his high level explanation to what happens at the code level.
I could not tell if the standard here is high or the task is too hard. So I leaned towards putting in more effort rather than voicing my concern.
I also did not have a good sense of "are these unknown parts of the code base grok-able with a little bit of time or do they require a lot of time?" to estimate time spent up front.
In the end I got some barebone thing out and he took over. Still took him a couple more weeks to get the thing finished. Along the way he solved some problems I'm sure I have no chance of solving in that timespan.
With this evidence I was sure the task was legitimately too hard for me and was comfortable letting my manager know my opinion.
Back up a little bit, when I started working on the project, my manager knew I could not stick to the original timeline set by the engineer and encouraged me to take my time to learn the codebase. What is puzzling is my manager did not tell the engineer about this unrealistic estimate. The engineer reports to a different manager and has been around way longer than my manager.
Maybe there is some politics going on that I'm not aware of.
Anyway this has been a very stressful experience.
What could I do better? What should I do to mitigate any harm done through this experience?
Hey everyone! I am looking for some advice. I have weekly 1:1 with my manager and during our last interaction, he suggested to come up with a yearly plan on things I want to achieve. Can someone shed some ideas/templates I can follow to create a roadmap or plan.
I'm an E5 mobile engineer at a Big Tech company. Due to lots of manager attrition, I currently report to a hands-off Director with too many reports to have regular 1:1s. I found an awesome EM who agreed to let me join his team and promised me E6-scope projects on his team. My Director is his skip-level, so I'm staying in the same org.
However, before I could make the official team switch, my TPM loaned me to another team lacking mobile resources to meet the TPM's own OKR. He did not bother talking to the awesome EM or me beforehand. My scope on the TPM's project is E5 at most. Now that project is dragging on. It's already code complete, but they want to keep me on that project until it's fully rolled out. We're waiting for mobile adoption to reach a certain threshold before we can do a force upgrade. Due to the code chill around the upcoming holidays, we likely can't do the force upgrade until next year. In the meantime, the project's EM is asking me to investigate pre-existing bugs in their feature. The awesome EM met with the TPM and that project's EM to fast-track my transfer, explaining that he needs me for Q1 planning & our team's own OKRs, but the latter two insisted that I need to support their project until it's completely done, which includes the force upgrade. Am I stuck on this project until January next year or is there a way to switch teams more quickly?
Hi guys, I am struggling with frequent EM changes in my current team. I understand the company also struggling to find the right person, however, there would 4th an EM in our team for the last year. With every change, it was a bit stressful for me because I could not make a good relationship with not all of them, how to deal with this kind of situations?
in my feelings, I am changing my company when every new manager joins the team.
I'm about to be officially promoted to Senior Engineer in a couple of days. At the same time, I've also been been presented with an opportunity to move to a different organization in Amazon that's doing some rather exciting work. This is an opportunity I'm likely to accept.
I deeply value my current manager's support, because he was critical in helping me secure my promotion despite some very tricky circumstances. I'm aware that promotions are just meant to recognize past work, but leaving virtually immediately after a promotion still feels rather unpleasant. Leaving now will also have a bigger impact on my team since we've shrunk quite a bit recently.
What are some tips for structuring and framing the inevitable conversations I will be having with my manager(s)?
I've gotten feedback from a mid performance review and my manager wants to see improvements in various areas. It includes improving my debugging skills by paying closer attention to pertinent details (and not getting distracted) for example.
Since then, I've become much more conscious and aware of the errors that I run into and much more deliberate in my debugging approach. This has resulted in me being able to diagnose problems much more accurately, and has also lended to me problem-solving much more effectively as well.
The problem is I'm not sure how to best demonstrate (or prove) that value improvement to my manager. Unlike PRs (which are often more visible in the value it demonstrates) -- you see what you get, my debugging skills/tactics are not readily obvious to the outside party unless they're observing my day-to-day activity. I can say that I've gotten better but if I have nothing to back that up with aren't they just words without weight? Who's to say that I'm even right in my own assessment without social feedback? I could be dunning kruger for all I know.
Is it enough for me to simply document those performance improvements and share (or talk about) them with my manager?
Note: My ultimate goal is to get promoted so I'm trying to (1) show that I've taken their feedback seriously and (2) demonstrate actual improvement since my last performance review.
Let me know if I'm thinking about this the right way or if am I overcomplicating it. Thanks!
Manager and I have a disagreement on creating a promo doc as per the approach suggested by Rahul and Alex .
So to avoid losing the time I went ahead with working on a XFN project, say Project XFNA , as it has high visibility and chance of impact. Due to the complexity I had to spend lot more time on it than I initially estimated.
It meant putting 1 week time learning/testing a frontend framework , Angular and I am a backend developer and never done Frontend coding earlier.
What happened was.. my main project's progress ( say Projects B , which doesn't have impact opportunities in the short term) got delayed by a week , due to my focused attention on Project XFNA. I am Mid-Level Software Engineer [SDE 2] at Amazon.
I will need to defend my time on this project XFNA as I focused on it purely for delivering quick impacts. So can I say to my Mgr that I "I took this initiative to work on Project XFNA for showing impact in the short term". If not, how should I rephrase it?
I recently applied for an internal transfer. As part of the company process, I discussed it with my manager. He approved my application for that one role, which fell through due to internal changes to the role. My manager was not particularly happy about my transfer request, though he mentioned how the company is supportive of engineers seeking internal opportunities.
What do I do to mitigate any potential consequences of the failed internal transfer (e.g. getting a poor performance review, being first on the chopping block for any layoffs, etc.)? Right now, I'm thinking it would be best to keep my head down and produce the best work I can, not applying to any other internal roles.
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.
I just joined Target at a Principal level. My manager is spread very thin and wants me to take initiatives and has told me to start networking heavily in the first few weeks. My plan is to create an Onboarding doc and share it with my manager. I'm going to use this doc to manage expectations and use it to review together 3 months down the line. How can I structure this doc? What pieces of information are more relevant/vital for such a doc. Any pointers?
I have been working in this company for 1 year 3 months now, and I'm feeling burnt out. I'm looking to take a break for around a month and a half, which I know is on the lengthier side. Does anyone here have experience requesting this long a leave?
I joined SAP as a Data Strategy intern. I have one - one calls scheduled with my manager and the rest of the team. One of my team members advised me to have goals, and expectations of the internship ready before going on to 1:1's.
I had a career discussion with my new manager during my one-on-one meeting. I did ask him if he is ready to put me up for promotion to senior software engineer. He said he will gather feedback and get back to me next week. In the following one-on-one discussion, he brought up a few points as feedback.
I am actually upset and demotivated. How can I handle this situation? How to move forward with my new manager regarding career discussion?
I joined this new company, and since the beginning things were little off for me. i.e.
Since last couple of days, I talked some of other engineers and found that all my team-mates are pretty toxic and, when he shared some of the past experiences, I got now convinced that it's pretty toxic environment especially for my team. Now my question is that all this time I thought I am the problem.. but it turned out that it was not me.. I am still pretty new here and I am seriously searching for another job now, but what did I miss here..? What could I have done here such that I would have known this earlier? (I know, I could have talked to the other guys earlier but I was not so sure because I had no idea how they would react to that.. I shared my concerns only when it became unavoidable)
I recently got moved to a new manager, and I've been having some trouble building back up the more fluid and quite positive relationship I had with my prior manager. In particular, I'm trying to get more signal into my feedback and how I can improve. When I go over this kind of content with my new manager, they'll say something more quick and high-level like "That makes sense", but they won't give me something more specific and concrete. How can I go deeper with these kinds of conversations while keeping our relationship healthy? I want to make sure I respect their boundaries.
I was assigned my first JIRA ticket at my first official dev job, which I started about two weeks ago. Given my situation, I want to know how long my manager expects me to work on the ticket, so I don't end up underperforming or not meeting expectations.
Some background: before this job, I worked at a very early-stage startup (one other person and myself for about a year), so I don't consider myself a complete junior. Additionally, I don't know my official title since I came in as a contractor and the contractor title does not match the FTE title, so I'm not sure what is expected of me.
Some of my thoughts: I've considered asking my manager directly how long he expects me to work on this JIRA ticket, but I wasn't sure if the question was too noob-like or too forward. I've also considered that so long as I'm making progress (which I am), I should be okay (until it's not).
So, all this to ask, should I ask my manager how long he expects me to work on my first JIRA ticket?
Question: "For being promoted from SWE I to SWE II, how do I take the behaviors my company has associated with each role (below) and make that more concrete for a growth plan, taking into account the changing & flexible timelines startups have?"
For context, I already have weekly one-on-ones with my manager (who is new at being a manager & is also my mentor), and a growth plan (that I created with him) that roughly outlines (meets most expectations, meets expectations and exceeds expectations for my role). Additionally, keep in mind I work at a startup w/ <30 people so highly specific concrete goals set on a particular date can change in 2-3 weeks as priorities change. Also, my company has defined a series of behaviors as to what each SWE level should be able to accomplish. Here it is.
Software Engineer I (<1 year - 2 years)
Software Engineer II (2-6Years+)
I have recently joined this company and I am trying to learn and I am clocking 12 hours everyday. Inspite of that I am doubting my abilities and I have manager who doesn't actually listen.. and instead of helping me navigate through this.. he is just on repeat saying I have to deliver this urgently .. and I am not picking up fast enough..
It's been hard for me to draw the line between work and life with their current involvement. Here's some examples:
I also have calls with a team in a very time zone, stretching out my workday and making it start pretty early and end pretty late. Any ideas on how I can improve this situation?
In the previous cycle, I wanted to be promoted to senior, but my manager stepped in relatively late into the process to let me know that my promo packet had gaps. Because of this, I wasn't put up for promotion and I'm still at SW2.
This all caught me completely off-guard, and my goal is to make sure this doesn't happen again in the next performance review cycle. How can I make sure that my manager and I are completely aligned going into the next promotion process, and I'm not hit with any last minute surprises?
I had a feedback session with my manager, and they gave me feedback that I was doing well overall but they would like to see me become more familiar with Meta's experimentation tools. They mentioned that this wasn't bad feedback as this unfamiliarity is expected with relatively new Meta engineers like myself. That being said, I'm unsure how to process it: Should I process it urgently and if so, how do I become familiar with Meta's gigantic experimentation infrastructure?
Context: I work as a Entry Level SWE at Series B Startup with 25 people; the SWE team is 7 people total. I am the only person currently under my manager & my coworkers are fairly clear about what I am building & why. Also, the SWE team morale is strong and productivity seems to be at a sustainable rate.
During our mentor-mentee meeting last week, my manager & I agreed to give each other specific feedback each week (and also agreed for our 1:1 meetings to be used for awkward, personal stuff as Alex & Rahul recommended). In general, I think he is an incredible manager; he’s personable, highly knowledgable, is available to answer my questions, & answers all my noobie questions but I do think there are some shortcomings as he is not used to being a mentor or a manager.
I don’t want to just say “Great job!“ as that is an easy default to fall into week-after-week.
So how do I evaluate my manager? Is there a set of questions somewhere? A framework of some kind?
I recently joined a startup (just finished my third week about to start my fourth) and I set up a one-on-one last week with my manager to hopefully create a mentor-mentee relationship. That went well and now I’m looking to create a growth plan and a way to measure my performance. We’ll be checking in on a weekly basis so I can get a sense of my performance and how I am growing as a engineer.
Given that it is a Series B startup with ~25 people, our goals will be shifting a lot which makes long-term growth plans hard to create. For context, since I joined, my 60 day and 90 day projects have shifted somewhat. So how do I create a growth plan that is flexible and what should it include (Concrete goals vs. more behavior orientated goals)?? Should the growth plan be used separately from judging my performance or would it be the measuring stick for performance?
Would really appreciate some insight on this.
Some additional questions:
I started my career in a mid-level startup that was on the verge of IPO. I contributed a lot. Learnt a lot in terms of how to deliver big scale features relatively quickly, work within sharp deadlines, owning features and products. I was a high performer.
After 2 years of working in that company, I decided to switch to Big Tech for better compensation. While Snap is not exactly a Big Tech company, this is what I had in mind when switching.
I immediately started adding value in terms of delivering features and owning products. However, since I come from a mid-level startup, my soft skills are very weak. I am an excellent programmer, but I struggle writing Technical Design Docs. I deliver features quickly, but I don't know how to contribute to the spec sheets and writing launch emails, holding engineering sessions, efficiently using 1:1s. It feels like in my previous company, delivering features on time, writing quality code was enough to be a high performer, but seems like Big Tech requires a lot more. My manager's ex-Amazon, so he values tech docs a lot, and I feel like I am missing a huge opportunity here by not being good at them.
How do I adapt better to this work environment ?
My skip level manager arranges 1:1 every quarter to know if everything is going good, if I need any help from him or if I have any questions. How can I best utilize this time?
My manager is relatively inexperienced (<1 year as a manager, and only a few more years of overall work experience than me). While they have a lot of expertise as a developer in the domain that we work on, when coming them to my previous manager, I don’t think that they have a ton of experience in growing and promoting people, esp. in a deliberate or structured way. How do I make sure that I continue growing, and receive the right growth opportunities and constructive feedback?
My current manager comes from a very different background compared to me and my team, which has lead to some misalignment in terms of what the team should do and how it should do it. I feel like there's a fundamental difference in working styles here.
This mis-sync has shown in our 1 on 1 meetings as well. They're less about my career growth and my goals and more about them and their way of doing things.
Any ideas on how to remedy this situation?
I'm currently working closer to the product side (i.e. consumer-facing) on my team. However, I want to move deeper into the infra layer, more into the back-end and away from the front-end, as that's what I'm more passionate about and this area should be more technically complex.
I've brought this up with my manager a couple times, but they said that since I'm already doing great in my current role, they would prefer for me to stay here. How can I navigate this conversation and convince them of this move?
I'm debating between two teams in bootcamp. All else assuming equal, the hiring manager (HM) of team A is higher up on the org chain (Team A HM reports to X, Team B HM reports to U who reports to W who reports to X).
Should this play a factor in deciding between teams?
I want to build a stronger relationship with my manager, but I'm unsure where the boundary should be when it comes to opening up to them. For example, I have some confidence issues which affect my work performance a bit: Is that something that's okay to share with them or is it possible that they'll hold it against me? I haven't interacted too much with my manager as I'm fairly new to the team, but so far, the signal has been positive.
As an E5, I'm switching to more of a tech lead role, and one of the engineers I'm leading has had consistently poor code quality despite being at Meta for a few years now.
I've asked my manager for feedback about this, and they say that we should come up with a plan to improve the situation. I've already invested time in this, and I'm not seeing results. How can I get the code quality feedback to fully land and improve this engineer's code?
I've heard it's always good to try and understand your manager's perspective, their expectations, and what they need from you.
I assume most junior engineers wouldn't have prior management experience, so it would be useful/insightful for junior engineers gain some perspectives on the priorities and challenges a manager faces whilst running a team, so they can better help the team.
I haven't gotten a promotion for several years now. I'm still 2 levels away from senior engineer. My manager says that it's because we're not on a revenue generating team so projects are harder to come by. The projects he suggests don't succeed. How can I better understand why I'm not getting promoted?