Does Your Manager Suck?

Would you rather: A) Never hear from your manager at all or B) Have your manager check in with you regularly? I mean, Option A may have it’s pros… but I think it’s the general consensus that we all, as employees, kinda want to know where we stand. We’re chatting with Tim Cheadle, VP of Engineering at Binti, about ye ole career ladder and what good management looks like in these #tryingtimes. Also, you should go check out Binti and what they’re doing for the foster care community.

Thirty three minutes and twenty nine seconds of pure industry insight can be found as a recap of our live show here.

For the theater trailer version:

The phrase “career ladder” wouldn’t normally be described as a particularly intriguing subject, but we’re going to try our best here. Really what we’re talking about is that subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) pull towards getting that next big role or title in your career. I mean who doesn’t want to get promoted and make more money, right? What we’re rarely talking about is takes great management it takes to reach our career goals. So what does a bad manager look like? If you experience symptoms of never knowing where you stand, feeling like the milestones are always moving, or feeling like your voice isn’t part of the team’s goals you may, in fact, be a victim of a bad manager.

As most of you know engineering leadership, in particular, is pretty jacked up. Well for the most part. If you want to be a manager, you have to truly and I mean truly love people. What we’re seeing and experience in engineering are people who started as a programmer taking the same work style approach to management. But it’s a totally different job, not something people should be promoted to by default.

What does this mean for you and your career goals? Well, let’s start by pinpointing why you’re rushing for that senior position. Money aside, could you feel that way because there’s so much gatekeeping around those positions? But does the fact that it’s difficult make it right for you? And what if your bad manager who never set goals or checked in with you regularly goes ahead and moves you up the ladder. Odds are that you’re going to fail and possibly get fired.

When it comes down to it, it’s difficult for managers to set expectations when they honestly don’t know what they want. But to leadership reading this that are open to change, start with setting aside regularly scheduled time for your team. Know specifics about your employees— what percent of their day is spent writing code or how much is design. Know their goals in the company and how you can help them achieve that. I’m not saying micromanage them, but you need to have a relationship built so you can be a foundation for their ladder.

Okay that was cheesy, but you hopefully get the point. Scroll back up and hit that link if you want to hear more about parenting while working from home or what hiring managers are looking for these days.