Engineering managers don’t receive enough support. The line manager in particular is one of the most overworked and under-supported roles in our industry, yet they have an outside impact on a team’s ability to be effective and for individuals to feel happy and engaged in their work.
As engineers ourselves, we’ve sensed this in roles we’ve held, environments we’ve been part of, conversations with our peers, and issues that come up time and again across our network. And we’ve witnessed the impact. Too many engineering managers are thrown into the role without training, then find themselves feeling overwhelmed and exhausted; scrambling to track down useful resources and solutions. Engineering teams in turn struggle without clear leadership and become increasingly disconnected.
One of the main reasons we started Range was to make life for engineering teams better, and we’ve always longed for a community to support this, so we thought we’d make it ourselves. It’s called Lead Time, a community for engineering leaders who aspire to create better working environments for their teams.
These leaders know that creating work cultures where personal growth and company growth go hand-in-hand, where productivity and well-being are not in conflict, and where everyone feels empowered to do their best work can be transformative for those who participate. Lead Time is a space where we can learn from each other, discuss ideas, and share challenges as we all move along this journey. Membership is currently by invitation, but you can easily request an invite at https://www.range.co/project/leadtime.Request an invitation to the Lead Time community
While there are other forums and communities out there, we’ve found participation challenging. Active Slack communities can make it hard to find information and participate in conversations as they move so fast — especially challenging for the manager schedule. We’re using Circle as the platform for Lead Time as it allows conversations to unfold over weeks and months, and we can incorporate feedback from the community to evolve content more easily.
As part of the launch of the Lead Time Community, we’re excited to introduce Lead Time Chats, a new engineering leadership interview series. Jean Hsu, Range’s VP of Engineering, who has extensive experience coaching individual contributors, tech leads, managers, CTOs and VPs of Engineering, will be interviewing engineering leaders from companies across the tech spectrum.
Follow us on Twitter to hear about the latest episodes and continue the conversation in the Lead Time Community. In the first episode, Jeans talks to Will Larson, the CTO of Calm (@Lethain), and author of the book An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management, about the path of the senior engineer.
In the second episode, Jean talks to Duretti Hirpa (@duretti), a principal engineer at Zipper Works who has also worked at Slack, MailChimp, and Fastly. They discuss approaches to coaching junior-level and mid-level engineers.
More episodes will be released over the next few weeks. With this series and Lead Time, our aim is to create a space where we can share experiences and resources, and support each other as we collectively map the road to “better.” We’ll facilitate contributions in different formats from luminaries across the industry and offer discussion prompts to get your brain going.
Our hope is that this can become a watering hole where you can drop by as frequently as you want and connect with people who understand what you’re going through.
If you’re an engineering leader, we hope you’ll join us, and on behalf of everyone here at Range, thanks for wanting to make the workplaces of tomorrow better than they are today.