It takes more than great code
to be a great engineer.

Soft Skills Engineering is a weekly advice podcast for software developers.

The show's hosts are experience developers who answer your questions about topics like:

  • pay raises
  • hiring and firing developers
  • technical leadership
  • learning new technologies
  • quitting your job
  • getting promoted
  • code review etiquette
  • and much more...

Soft Skills Engineering is made possible through generous donations from listeners. A heart with a striped shadowSupport us on Patreon

Recent Episodes

Latest Episode

Episode 27: Writing Great Resumes and Pushing Back on Non-Engineering Tasks

Download

In episode 27, Jamison and Dave answer these questions:

How do I write a great resume?

  • Do you really need a resume these days?
  • How important is formatting and good design?
  • What content should be on your resume?

Should I push back on non-engineering tasks like PowerPoint presentations?

From listener samspot: I am a Sr. Developer and I am often asked to spend time on PowerPoint presentations for funding and other business stuff. I want to ask why the managers, analysts, etc can’t handle these tasks. I find them to be a frequent distraction from my actual responsibilities, especially because these are so frequently “emergency” requests. Should I push back on this work, or is it better to be a team player?

A smiling speech bubble
A smiling speech bubble

Episode 25: Understanding the Business and Managing Without Being a Developer

Download

In episode 25, Jamison and Dave answer these question:

How do I understand the business side better?

  • Analysis of tabs vs spaces
  • How does your business make money?
  • Just ask your CEO/manager
  • Kill the myth of the pointy-haired boss
  • Smaller companies expose you to this more
  • Just ask questions:
    • What was our revenue last month?
    • How much did we spend last month?
    • Who are our biggest customers?
    • How does the sales process work?
  • The Dave Smith Method® for learning business jargon.
  • Be kind and have empathy when you learn.

Can I be a good technical manager without a technical background?

  • Technical leadership vs management.
  • Management means empathy and understanding. Can you get that without “coming up through the ranks”?
  • What are the skills of a good manager?
  • Does being a developer give you those skills?
  • Dave is a Night Elf Code Mage.
  • How do you handle technical concerns as a non-technical person?
  • Don’t fake technical knowledge.
  • Leading a team when you don’t directly see the effect of your actions.
  • Managing Nerds by Rands.
  • Jamison’s former boss’s technical expertise
A speech bubble

Why should you listen?

Soft Skills Engineering listeners are awesome. Here's what they are saying about the podcast.

Are you a fan? Say hello on social media!