Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager: A FranklinCovey Title

Author: Kory Kogon, James Wood, Visit Amazon's James Wood Pagesearch resultsLearn about Author CentralJames Wood
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by jfarmer   2018-12-17
Hey hey! I run workshops for engineers who want to develop leadership skills. Shoot me an email at if you want to chat.

Honestly, it's up to you. There is no "right" answer here, although there might be a "right" answer for the company (i.e., they need you to step into a leadership position or else they need to find someone to be your new lead).

It seems like you're confusing "tech lead" with "engineering manager," because most tech leads spend a significant amount of time coding. The tech lead on a project is the person who shapes the technical direction of the project, knows all the ins and outs, and helps other people on their team from a technical perspective.

At many companies they might have 1-2 reports, often junior people who need active mentorship, but most of their time is spent on technical + project management work.

I recommend the book _Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager_:

A very coarse generalization is that tech leads own the "how", engineering managers own the "who", product managers own the "what", and project managers own the "when".

At smaller companies these responsibilities naturally blur together. It also depends on the nature of the business. If the company has a big client services component with lots of custom integrations, then project management will almost certainly be its own dedicated function.

Give it a shot and see how you like it! Speak with your boss and say you're unsure of whether this is for you, but you'll give it a college try. The worst that happens is you learn you don't enjoy that type of work.

by cpeterso   2018-11-19
The book "Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager" is a high-level but pretty complete introduction to project management. It has good examples from non-technical projects, such as rolling out a new health program in a hospital. It uses official terms from the Project Management Institute’s infamous "Project Management Body of Knowledge" (PMBOK) so information learned from this introduction can be carried over to more rigorous projects.