The First Step Into Management

Massimiliano Pippi

Agent and Integrations Team Lead at Datadog



"I had wanted to take a step up in my career but didn't know how to go about doing this. Eventually, I found a role as a team lead, so I grabbed it with both hands, but I was unsure about what to expect, so it was an incredible learning experience."

Actions taken

"While my first year as a team lead was stressful, I really enjoyed my time. However, I came to realize that it wasn't what I wanted to do for the rest of my career - I wanted to also be able to code. I could have kept working as a team lead, but I didn't feel comfortable being one without giving all I could to the management side of the work and if you do that you end up with no time to code. While on paper, the role is 50/50 management/engineering, in reality, it's at best 80 percent management, 20 percent coding. In addition, because you have less time to code, you tend to take on much smaller challenges. If you want to be a manager, this is awesome, as you effectively are in an engineering team but you are technically also almost a manager. But if you don't want to be a manager, it can be problematic."

Lessons learned

"I would recommend that everyone tries working as a team lead, as it gives you a completely different experience. If you are an introvert, like me, it also forces you to open up to people. I'm not stepping back now due to stress, but rather because this helped me to realize how much I loved coding."

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Massimiliano Pippi

Agent and Integrations Team Lead at Datadog

Engineering ManagementTechnical SkillsProgrammingSoftware DevelopmentCareer GrowthCareer ProgressionSkill DevelopmentIndividual Contributor RolesLeadership RolesTeam & Project Management

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