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Tech Leadership and Management

This talk was held on Thursday, March 01, 2018 at 6:00pm

On March 1, 2018, Indeed hosted a series of talks about leadership and management in the tech industry. Presenters included Indeed leadership from engineering, product and product science — all of whom spoke about their experiences and provided insights into our engineering organization. Read more in this post about our topics and featured speakers. 

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Teach a Manager to Fish

Robyn Rap

Many of us become leaders because we like mentoring, whether that’s helping people code better or working through time management issues. But how many of us have taken the time to teach in a classroom setting? Whatever your feelings about school, teaching a workshop is a powerful leadership tool that you can — and should — use to enact organizational change at all levels of your company, from ICs to SVPs. In this talk, I encourage attendees to create a training of their own by sharing the benefits and common misgivings of teaching. Attendees will also leave with tips they can apply directly to their ideas for teaching.

New Engineering Manager at Indeed? First: Write Some Code

Paresh Suthar

Indeed’s engineering culture focuses on ownership, real-world impact, and constant incremental delivery. To continue to support these values as our company grows, Indeed has invested heavily in the onboarding experience for engineering managers. I started at Indeed in March 2016 as an “industry hire” manager for software engineers. I was excited to learn, however, that my first task as a manager would be writing code. At Indeed, engineering managers onboard as individual contributors (ICs) before taking on managerial responsibilities. In this talk, I’ll discuss how working as an IC prepared me to be a more effective manager by familiarizing me with Indeed’s workflow and tools, as well as by helping me build trust with my team.

What your Product Manager Wants from a Tech Lead

Michael Magan

A Product Manager at Indeed works with development teams to drive innovation and ensure that products serve both job seekers and employers. The Product Manager advocates for the user, facilitates cross-team work, and provides insights for the product and the development team. But what does a Product Manager need from a team’s Tech Lead to be successful in these goals? In this talk, I’ll discuss five requests that Product Managers can make of their Tech Leads. These requests range from feature-focused to overall vision for the product, so both manager and lead are aligned and working together — at every level — to provide the best possible product for end users.

Quantum Leap: From Managing a Team to Leading an Org

Ketan Gangatirkar

The career path from engineer to manager is a big change. Many of the strategies you use as an engineer to lead projects and collaborate with teams become core skills that you continue to use as a manager. Becoming an organizational leader is where the continuous progression of your skill set breaks down — it’s a quantum leap.  As an organizational leader, the rules, and often the logic of your world, become very different. To blindly apply the lessons of your previous management experiences to this new world can be harmful — you would be applying the right strategy to the wrong game.

In this talk, I’ll discuss my experiences leading an organization of 140 SWEs in 6 offices around the world. I’ll share what it means to embrace one’s ignorance in this brave new world. I’ll also provide strategies for acclimating to a role that asks you to forget what you know and embrace new and unfamiliar perspectives and tactics. Becoming an organizational leader isn’t a progression to a higher level of the same job, it’s a different job entirely.

This talk will help you understand this job, the skills you’ll need to prepare for it, and the strategies and tactics to apply to be effective once you get there. I’m far from knowing all of it, but what I have figured out will help you understand the job, whether you want it, and how to be better at it.