The Engineering Manager Handbook: Practical tools and techniques for programmers who want to lead
I wrote this book to help Engineering Managers or aspiring managers become more effective at leading software engineers by improving their ability to retrospect, communicate, collaborate, delegate and inspire other people.
An introduction to the book:
If I had to choose a single word to describe how I felt in my transition from an engineer into a manager, that would be it. As much as I was excited, I was also terrified.
We were never taught the dark art of building a team or leading people. As if this isn’t enough, these unique individuals (hence “snowflakes”) in our team tend to be incredibly smart, analytical, opinionated, self-driven, and ambitious. Engineers.
What is it then, which could aid me in finding my own management style? What can I do to gain that confidence I need, to start leading, rather than reacting?
One of the things I appreciate most in our profession as software engineers is being able to break complexity into smaller, almost tangible parts, where figuring out these patterns of simplicity can not only produce beautiful solutions, but also introduce us to the building blocks of beautiful software. Writing this book was my own journey to present tools and techniques I believe can discover these building blocks of beautiful leadership.
Now, our job is to ask the right questions, to encourage people to think, to challenge, to inspire.
While we may always feel that we are walking in this path alone, I want to challenge you to look deeper into the way you lead others. I want to challenge you to share the reasons you lead people in a certain way, so those patterns of simplicity you find along the way can become your own secret sauce to leadership.
I’m cheering for you for taking the time to invest in yourself and do what you believe is best for your team. I know that you’re busy, that you hardly have the time to breathe. It is people like you who encouraged me to write this book. I know because I’ve been there. I know, because I can feel what you are feeling now.
I was never a consultant or a theorist. My pains came from facing the same problems you’re facing today. My desire for patterns and practices came from mentoring other Engineering Managers along the years.
It is my hope that my observation and techniques could enrich your managerial arsenal, helping you to find your own path to become a great Engineering Manager and a great leader.
What people say about Leading Snowflakes:
When I first became a manager, I was hungry to learn as much as I could. If this book had existed back then, I would have bought 3 copies. — Eli Goodman, former Director of Engineering at Etsy
I am often in awe as I keep finding Leading Snowflakes addresses the exact challenges I face as a new manager. Reading this book lets me know I’m not alone and provides great perspective and tools to overcome these issues. Leading Snowflakes has definitely made me a better team leader! — Ohad Laufer, Engineering Manager at HP Software