Learning to Lead with Technical Manager Training

By Jes­si­ca Mitsch ● April 02, 2021

Technical manager training is valuable for helping skilled employees advance their career, building a foundation for effective leadership methods that can empower managers to guide growth in others.

A technical manager often receives a promotion to manager because of demonstrated achievements in individual contributions across tasks such as developing code, reviewing code, performing technical documentation, and more. Once you become a manager, you are expected to deliver great results through the individual contributors you manage while also keeping your team’s procedures and progress in check and stakeholders informed. As a technical manager, you may also still contribute individually on top of management work, but it is your main responsibility to support your team by assigning tasks and monitoring progress, communicating proactively and transparently. It can be difficult to transition out of a position where you are in control of the work you contribute, so technical manager training can help you understand your role in the team and enable you to continue to grow while also helping others grow.

Technical managers must frequently deal with ambiguity, working around unexpected changes with agility. Target setting should be realistic and with accountability checks integrated to keep the team on track. However, it is important to also help your team feel comfortable with unexpected changes or problems, and they should feel safe coming to you with ideas, questions, and issues.

Building a Foundation for Growth

One challenge of being a technical manager is building a foundation for your team to grow and feel comfortable sharing opinions. A good technical manager must be willing to make an effort to build a collaborative environment for their team. This can be achieved by taking time to consider the various working styles of all team members, as well as understanding what factors are most motivating for each individual contributor. Additionally, you should reflect on your personal capacity to be open-minded and agreeable. A manager can sometimes slow progress on a technical team if the team members are too reliant on the manager’s perspective and approval, which can stifle individual and team growth. Frequent communication can help build vital trust within your team, helping you to feel more comfortable enabling team members to demonstrate their technical skills and allow their voices to be heard.

Effective Communication

Another challenge that is especially prevalent in the role of a technical manager is the need to effectively communicate technical information. You will be frequently updating business stakeholders on tasks, projects, and progress, but these stakeholders may not have as deep of a technical background or foundational understanding of the work your team performs. You will need to translate jargon into key points and share the relevant information using plain language. Empathy is also important for managers to understand the perspectives of business-user stakeholders. Feedback and patience are key factors in clarifying communications and ensuring that everyone is on the same page and working toward the same goals.

You may feel that you have less time to continue your own skills training as your managing tasks take priority. Momentum offers technical manager training to help you find your strengths as a manager, give you tools to understand how to navigate challenges and conflict and improve team motivation. See how we can help you advance your career.