Episode 313: Parents are fighting and hat-removal


In this episode, Dave and Jamison answer these questions:

  1. After six years at my first job out of college, I took the foolproof SSE advice and quit my job last year during the height of the pandemic. I landed at one of the Big Software Companies and learned that I negotiated very well for pay within my role (in large part, thanks to this podcast - yay!), but I am way overqualified compared to my peers and should have attempted to come in at the next software engineer level (oops).

    To get promoted I need signoff from my fairly new manager and the very tenured principal engineer (PE) who has historically run the team. My manager and the PE are frequently in disagreement, and send me one-off slacks to make requests that are directly at odds with each other. I’m squarely aligned with my manager’s prioritization which frequently puts me at odds with the senior PE. Yikes.

    The senior PE frequently overlooks technical complexity and business context, and gives far more technical opportunities to the men on the team. I don’t like his mode of leadership, and so do not want to mimic his style. Unfortunately, he’s very respected by the VP+ level so I worry that friction with him will swiftly crush my dreams of promotion.

    The parents are fighting. I’m caught in the middle and feel like I’m aligned with the side that is at a political disadvantage. Is there any hope of success for me unless they can magically start to get along?

  2. I joined a small team as a developer a few years ago, and was asked by management to help introduce some formal processes to the team to help us release a project that has been in the works for a number of years.

    With the team’s buy-in, I introduced SCRUM, and started playing the role of Scrum Master and Product Owner. I may also be the development team’s functional manager in the future. It seems that having the roles of 1) developer, 2) scrum master, 3) product owner, and 4) functional manager is too much for any one person to do well. With a primary role of functional manager, which of these other roles would make sense to hold onto? Which roles would be better to either hire replacements for or coach other team members to take over?

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