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DPC16: Things I was unprepared for as a lead developer

DPC16: Things I was unprepared for as a lead developer

Tthis is the story of how I became a lead developer and all the things I did wrong. It's about delegating, culture building, mentoring, planning, meetings (oh dreadful meetings), upper management and all the other stuff that a leader has to go through. It's also about all the fun I had and the things I learned. Next to that, I'm going to hand out some tips that can prepare you for the job a little better. And hopefully, it will inspire you to be the greatest leader of all.

Given at DPC '16


Pascal de Vink

June 25, 2016


  1. Who here is a developer? (Keep your hand raised!)

  2. Who does not intend to be a developer forever?

  3. Who thinks she/he is ready to lead a team?

  4. Who’s arm is tired?

  5. Pascal de Vink @pascaldevink Things I was unprepared for as

    a lead developer
  6. Alexander the Great

  7. How do we get to be the great leader?

  8. Mid Dev Keynote Speaker Sr. Dev Chief Architect Distinguished Dev

    Dev Evangelist Author/ Speaker Junior Dev Dev Manager Project Manager Freelance Dev Solopreneur Startup Founder Small Business CEO Founder, 3rd company Chairperson of the Board Director of Product Engineering/ Team Lead VP of Product Director/VP Engineering CTO Developer Manager Entrepreneur Founder, 2nd company Brandon Hays
  9. The story…

  10. It didn’t go so well…

  11. Why were these tasks distracting me?

  12. I wasn’t prepared!

  13. Go home with this Lesson #1 Expectation management

  14. None
  15. Make sure you still get enough code time

  16. Agenda management

  17. Say NO more often

  18. Delegating

  19. C. VanHook - Flickr

  20. Culture (building)

  21. –Gruenter and Whitaker “The culture of any organisation is shaped

    by the worst behaviour the leader is willing to tolerate”
  22. None
  23. Culture is shaped by the best behaviour a leader is

    willing to promote
  24. • Mentoring • Giving and receiving feedback • Motivating •

    Hiring (and firing) people • Sickness / personal problems • Lead by example
  25. None
  26. Financial management

  27. That day the boss came up to me…

  28. None
  29. Public speaking

  30. None
  31. Talk to others

  32. –Susan Gale “We all have something in common. It’s just

    a matter of taking the time to find out what it is.”
  33. Things you can do right now • Start mentoring •

    Ask for help • Feedback • Public speaking • Take an interest
  34. Questions? • https://speakerdeck.com/tehviking/hacking-spacetime- for-a-successful-career • https://phpmentoring.org • http://www.amazon.com/The-Art-Asking-Learned- Worrying/dp/1455581089 •

    https://leanpub.com/talking-with-tech-leads • http://simpleprogrammer.com/2015/05/25/some- advice-on-becoming-a-lead-developer/