Episode 183: Terrible boss code and peer-to-peer mentorship

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In this episode, Dave and Jamison answer these questions:

  1. I work in a small team under 10 people on a new project that should be shipping soon. I have a manager who is leading this project, and I’m the most senior developer on the team.

    My manager tries to help with the project by writing code, but does it rather poorly. When he wants to implement new functionality, he creates a new branch and brews his code in this branch for 2-3 months, constantly complaining how hard it is to write code in our codebase. After he is done, the resulting code is unreadable, unmaintainable and untestable. He doesn’t write unit tests himself (which is weird, considering he was working as a QA before for several years) and usually breaks good portion of already written ones. I always have to go to his branch and refactor his code so it’s at least testable, fix broken unit tests and write new ones for his functionality. He always makes it look like our codebase is hard to work with, though the rest of the team doesn’t have this problem.

    How should I deal with this situation?

    I tried speaking to him directly, but he is pretty stubborn and thinks that he is doing everything perfectly.

    I can’t talk to his manager, since we have a pretty flat company and his manager is the CEO who I don’t have a direct access to.

  2. I work in a digital agency as part of team of 5 front end developers with varying levels of experience. We don’t have a senior / lead / director, it’s pretty flat. I have been told by management that we need to work on peer to peer mentor-ship because each of us have been guilty at some point of spinning our wheels on some problem when we should have reached out. The problem is we all work on different projects, there’s never 2 ““fed””s building the same site, and each site kind of feels like it’s own unique bowl of spaghetti.

    If you have any pointers about breaking out our code bubbles that would be amazing! Love the show, I hadn’t given non technical skills much thought but you’ve opened my brain! Thank you!

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