Managing large (9 ppl) software teams?
January 17, 2014 5:23 AM Subscribe
My manager is overwhelmed. I'm unhappy. He's asking for feedback from team.
posted by zeek321 to Work & Money (10 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
My manager is overwhelmed having eight reports and many, many projects. He doesn't know how to manage(?)/track(?) so many people and projects, and, of course, he's accountable to the managers and CEO above him.
What tends to happen is that a project will get broken down into two-week chunks, and then if a two-week chunk doesn't get completed on time he'll become sporadically very, very upset, as all the remaining chunks get pushed back a week.
He's agile-aware, as it were. He's open to different tools and different procedures. And I think, in theory, he's open to learning-as-you-go, updating requirements, unforeseen blockers, and so forth. But, he's so busy or overtaxed, there doesn't seem to be a way to verbally communicate or explore updated reality with him. All he sees are dates and things not getting done, and by the time he actually sits down to review with us what's done and not done, the possibility of reasoning with him seems long gone.
The A-game people plow ahead, put in the extra time, and just generally get stuff done. Or they seem to have a better sense of what needs to get done and what can slide. Of course, some of them are very good at what they do. But I'm not really willing to unceasingly kill myself for arbitrary deadlines that don't have basis in reality. Maybe this is a separate issue.
My manager seems to be honestly looking for suggestions. The team has rapidly grown in size. And we're sitting down in a few days to try to come up with new work tracking, policies, and procedures. Do we need a better way to visualize work? We have a high-level list of projects, a tracker for the two-week chunks, and one more tracker down to the granularity of about 4-48 hours. Everything's linked together. Do we need to come up with better estimates? Do we need something more than weekly meetings and daily check-ins?
I'd be grateful for some insight into what's going on here, what to do about it, and how to make my work-life better.