The Three Dimensions of Engineering Management

Jeremy Wight

VP of Engineering at CareMessage



"Different companies expect different things from their engineering managers. They usually revolve around the same basic responsibilities, but I have found that there are three dimensions that idealize the position."

Actions taken

I see engineering management as three key focus areas:

  1. People management

    • "Are you doing good one-on-ones?"
    • "Are you able to give good feedback?"
    • "Are you helping low performers to clearly understand and improve?"
    • "Are you helping high performers to take more responsibility and grow?"
  2. Project management

    • "Are you building the right sort of things?"
    • "Are they delivering?"
    • "Is your team meeting deadlines?"
    • "When things get off track, can they be communicated effectively?"
    • "Can you collaborate with other teams to get things done?"
    • "Do you understand how to engage with the stakeholders?"
    • "Do you have a business focus and understand how your product is impacting not just your specific technology but the business at large?"
  3. Technical oversight

    • "How are you going to build a product out in the long-term, not just the short-term?"
    • "Are you aware of the complexities and shifting landscapes that lie ahead?"
    • "Can you help your team make the best technical decisions?"
    • "How are you able to support the team so that they can sniff our issues before they become major problems?"
    • "In what ways are you helping individuals grow, even if they have more technical knowledge than you?"

Lessons learned

"Ultimately, engineering management is about making sure that your team is healthy. That means that people are engaged, that they are delivering, and that they are effective. You can determine these items by looking at metrics as well as comparing the longevity of individuals on the team versus the rest of the company."

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Jeremy Wight

VP of Engineering at CareMessage

Engineering ManagementPerformance MetricsFeedback Techniques

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