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Software Development

The Role of an Engineering Manager

Clock 15 min read
Howdy Expert

By Pablo Arreche

Software Developer

Pablo Arreche is a Howdy software engineer with over nine years of experience in software development and leadership roles. He describes his role as an engineering manager as part mentor, part tech lead, part project manager. Pablo is based in Montevideo, Uruguay, where he studied at Universidad ORT Uruguay.

Content

    As an engineering manager, I often get asked what my role entails. The truth is the engineering manager is a little bit of everything. Part mentor, part tech lead, part project manager, engineering managers are driven by one primary objective: to make things happen.

  1. What does an Engineering Manager do?
  2. Engineering managers participate in every stage of a development cycle. They work with the product team to make sure the project is well-scoped and the team has the right skill set. They identify and define dependencies, risks, and mitigation plans. Engineering managers even collaborate with stakeholders on progress reports and rollout plans. They do all of this while trying to keep team members motivated, happy, and challenged.

    I like to think of the engineering manager as the glue that holds everyone together. By juggling the interests of the different parties involved, engineering managers ensure an efficient, enjoyable, and successful project.

  3. What does it take to be an Engineering Manager?
  4. My advice? To become an engineering manager, get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable. You need to seamlessly transition from writing code and hunting down bugs to managing your team and helping them through challenges.

    As a leader, you often have to let members of your team drive while you set the course from the backseat. To be a good engineering manager, you need to create opportunities for your teammates to grow and guide them along on that journey.

    Bottom line? Being an engineering manager takes adaptability, empathy, and resourcefulness. Perhaps most importantly, it takes a passion for making things happen.

As an engineering manager, I often get asked what my role entails. The truth is the engineering manager is a little bit of everything. Part mentor, part tech lead, part project manager, engineering managers are driven by one primary objective: to make things happen.

What does an Engineering Manager do?

Engineering managers participate in every stage of a development cycle. They work with the product team to make sure the project is well-scoped and the team has the right skill set. They identify and define dependencies, risks, and mitigation plans. Engineering managers even collaborate with stakeholders on progress reports and rollout plans. They do all of this while trying to keep team members motivated, happy, and challenged.

I like to think of the engineering manager as the glue that holds everyone together. By juggling the interests of the different parties involved, engineering managers ensure an efficient, enjoyable, and successful project.

What does it take to be an Engineering Manager?

My advice? To become an engineering manager, get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable. You need to seamlessly transition from writing code and hunting down bugs to managing your team and helping them through challenges.

As a leader, you often have to let members of your team drive while you set the course from the backseat. To be a good engineering manager, you need to create opportunities for your teammates to grow and guide them along on that journey.

Bottom line? Being an engineering manager takes adaptability, empathy, and resourcefulness. Perhaps most importantly, it takes a passion for making things happen.