A while ago, I wrote this https://github.com/fathanfi/manager-readme, inspired by the other manager readme. Though it’s debatable whether the doc is useful, to me, writing this kind of doc is intended for ourselves – as managers – to force us to think about what kind of managers we want to be and what is our expectation to work with our directs, explicitly.
3 years afterward, I’m rethinking and came up with this…
In case you are curious, my MBTI personality is INFJ-A. I highly suggest you take that personality assessment so you know yourself better, and don’t forget to share it with me so I can understand you better as well.
Most of my day is spent collecting, filtering, and sharing context/information from other projects, domains, people, and product lines. I’ll try to be transparent by pushing information to you as much as possible, but feel free to ask about anything else.
If You Need Anything, Book Coffe Time - Fathan
My availability might look scary; most of the time, you might find that I don’t have any slots on my calendar, but I’m here for you. If you find free time on my calendar, please schedule something right away. You can contact me anytime, even on the weekend or even at midnight. I always try to respond quickly. I might message you things, but it can always wait until Monday unless I say it’s urgent.
My expectations for you
We will have 1:1 every week for at least 30 minutes except during high-pressure weeks ( e.g., Audit, Critical Incidents ); we will revisit whether we can change it to bi-weekly. Still, I’d like to keep us having overcommunicating. You will also get updates from me on what I’m currently doing, problems that I have, and updates from greater org or company – if I’m not sharing any of these, please let me know because I might be too focused on other points.
Please proactively tell me anything if you sense something is off your team, other teams, other individuals, or something else that might be a significant concern. If you doubt whether you need to tell me or not, please tell me right away; overcommunicate better than sorry.
Please continually educate yourself with software engineering fundamentals and the latest technology. We know that technology constantly evolves, but in the end, as long as you have excellent fundamentals, you will not have difficulties catching up on anything.
Always build a network to yourself with Habluminannas in mind; believe me, having new peers, and community involvement will broaden your mind and constantly push you to learn something new. I’m more than happy to help you find new peers or communities that fit your goals and career aspirations.
If you are a people manager – please read below :
Ensure that you have weekly 1:1s with your direct reports. Please make sure you are explicit about your direct reports career plan, and feedback, share any context/updates from the org or company that you have, which I will always try to share with you, and make sure you coach them through any problems that they have.
Please continue to improve your management skills by attending conferences, leadership or development workshops, learn from other peers. Being a people manager is one tricky thing; you need to constantly know from others as people change dynamically over time and have a different ways to handle it.
Lastly, please promote work-life harmony for you and your team. I firmly believe that people who can maintain their work-life balance fall into the smart & get things done person type. Take a vacation, do your hobbies, and please ensure that you do any sports.
Expect that I will have skip-level 1:1s with your direct reports to get a sense of what’s happening on the ground and keep my intrapersonal relationship with them.
My Values & Philosophy
- People First
I always believe that people are the top ingredient for a company’s success. Having great people & great culture will end up with great products. My focus would be to optimize processes and the way people work to be the best of what they can be.
No company will require me to lie to you, and it could never happen as I would not abide that thing. Expect that I will always tell the truth to you, but there will be times when the company requires me to not tell something before a specific date ( e.g., New Title Appointment to a specific person, strategic-position person who going to leave )
- No Leader is Always Right
There is no silver bullet for leadership; no one will ever be 100% right. I expect that we will have continuous feedback on each other. It could be something that you think I screwed up, I could do better, or even things that you think I don’t want to hear – please, I do want to listen to it.
- Big Haters of “It will be done when it’s done.”
I will always try to give dates and ETA in my every action, and I expect you will do the same. If you don’t know when it’s done, tell me honestly to figure it out together.
I always own everything that is assigned to me as my own thing by understanding why I need to do it and why I need to do it by <duedate_here>. This thinking helps me to bring the best out of myself. If you don’t know why you are doing a particular task, please ask; the last thing I want is you are doing something just because I said so.
- Being Husnuzan
Trust is something that I will give the first time, especially to people who report to me. However, to lead people means that I need to put positive assumptions about everything that happens. This will help me to see silver linings in everything, embrace a psychologically safe environment, and focus on learning from mistakes.