Having worked with technology teams for many years I’ve found the challenges they face are universal. Technology teams tend to see the same challenges whether they are part of a 5-person startup or Fortune 50 company. So, don’t despair, your leadership challenges are not so unique they cannot be easily addressed. Here are 3 ways Ice Cold Leader and our process can improve your tech team today.
Do these challenges in tech teams sound familiar?
- The “smartest person” (best coder or programmer) is the one promoted. Not necessarily the best leader or team player.
- When the “smartest person” is promoted to leadership, he or she generally solves problems by taking on the task themselves. This creates an environment of micromanagement which quickly leads to the leader becoming overwhelmed.
- Team members do not share work because of fear that their work will be copied or stolen and they will not get the credit.
- Tech professionals are hesitant to say, “I don’t know” because it might give the impression they are not smart enough.
- Technology projects are often not completed, completed late, not completed to specifications, and typically over budget.
Our process helps tech leaders address these common problems through a common sense, repeatable leadership process. Here are some leadership areas to focus on as you look to improve your tech team.
- Focus on acknowledging the behaviors that are holding back your team. If saying “I don’t know” is hard for your team, express the importance of acknowledging they may be struggling with a project. Addressing the behaviors independent of your “widget” is the first step to improving any team, not just tech teams.
- Plan and communicate. As a former Navy SEAL and FBI operative, I never went on an operation without the plan fully in place before we began executing. Not fully planning before you begin executing is a recipe for disaster. And, not having a consistent communication plan in place while you are executing so problems and challenges can be identified and addressed early, before they become too big, is a necessity.
- Identify things that can go wrong before you begin executing. AKA, “contingency planning”. You can never account for everything that can go wrong, but there are always a few things you can think of. There are many reasons why contingency planning is important. The most important reason, in my mind, is because it creates a mindset around properly handling setbacks. If you and your team are considering things that can go wrong before you start executing, there will not be panic or hesitation to move forward when they actually go wrong.
Begin thinking about these areas of leadership to improve your tech team. Address them with your team and get their feedback. Be consistent talking about the importance of these behaviors.
Do these things and your tech team will improve!
Errol is hosting a FREE Leadership Workshop on Thursday January 13th, 2022 at 3pm EST. The topic of the workshop is “How To Establish Your Culture and Improve Your Hiring Practices“. The workshop is designed for all levels of leader in every field of endeavor who want to level up and become the best version of themselves. Secure your spot here.
Errol Doebler is the founder of Ice Cold Leader, a leadership consulting firm. After successful careers as a Navy SEAL Platoon Commander and FBI Special Agent, Errol founded Ice Cold Leader to realize his passion of empowering great leaders and better human beings. Errol provides executive coaching, keynote speaking, and corporate retreats to individuals and teams across the world.