Tips For Becoming A Great Tech Leader

how to become a tech leader

Being a tech lead can be stressful due to the pressure to manage projects, communicate with your team, and deliver results. Here are a few tips to help you navigate this constantly evolving role to reach your workplace goals. 

Be Balanced

Being a leader in any industry requires balance, but it is especially important for the tech field because of the variety of work offered within it. Tech leads manage projects, analyze data, and many other tasks in between. 

When taking on a tech leadership role, there are other smaller roles that you must fulfill, too. For example, you must fit into the models of leadership, the developer, and the architect. The leadership role requires you to be a valid communicator. It relies more on your interpersonal relations, working as a team, and ability to manage. The developer role takes on duties like coding and analyzing data. Last is the architect role. This includes the design and long term vision of the project. Marrying these attributes together gets you an unstoppable trifecta in the tech world. 

Have Tenacity

There are going to be times when the going gets tough, but it is vital to stick to it. If anyone knows this, it's the well-known investor, Mark Wiseman. Mark Wiseman is the current chair of Alberta Investment management. He is also the former investment chair of BlackRock Investment Chair and former Chief Executive of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. When investing, you put in copious amounts of time and analysis, but the return is not always immediate. The same goes for your tech leadership. A project may be slow-moving with obstacles galore, but that doesn't mean you should quit before you reach the outcome. 

During unprecedented times, Wiseman's advice is to just keep going. Even when things are not working in your favor, or unexpected financial crises take over, the hard work you continue to put into your job will shine through with time. Wiseman reminds leaders to take charge and trust that it will all work out if you just put your head down and get the work done to effectively reach your goals. It's this sort of perseverance that separates the good from the great. 

Learn New Skills

Many tech leads may already know some common types of coding languages. However, one particularly helpful coding language is python. A beneficial tool that leaders should utilize is python subplots. Python subplots allow you to analyze multiple data sets within one figure for more efficient and effective data visualization. For example, if you have data from four different countries on car crash fatalities from 2010 to 2015, python subplots allow you to combine this data to create one figure of subplots. Analyzing one figure is less time consuming and more efficient than analyzing four different figures. 

For easier access to python subplots, you can import matplotlib. Matplotlib consists of tools that aid coders in more easily generating plots or subplots. If you would like more information on how to begin coding with python subplots, you can always utilize resources from the experts, like Nick McCullum

Be Open To Change

Any great leader knows that feedback is necessary for growth. Be open to the process of change if things don't go as planned. If the model that you have created isn't working, don't despair— reach out to other team members for feedback. It's crucial to value those on your team and their voices as well. Yes, you are the leader, but remember that your team plays a vital role in the overall success of your projects, too. You could assign more managerial tasks to members who thrive in that area as well. Overall, just remember to run the line of managing for a goal while also maintaining flexibility and a positive work environment. 

Hustle Habits  

Habit is the key ingredient for progress in leadership. Unless you have goals that can be achieved in a single step, chances are you will need to devote time and energy towards your goals in regular, frequent amounts. And, human nature being what it is, we often lose motivation and drive when the journey before us is arduous. How do we keep going when we don’t want to? Habit. 

Over the past 7 weeks I have been leading a small group of friends on the hundred push-up challenge. The goals are simple: first, to be able to do one hundred pushups at all, within the same day, and then to be able to do one hundred pushups without stopping. The key ingredient to success in this challenge is the habit of doing the required number of pushups every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, without exception. In the beginning, there were some folks who couldn’t manage more than two pushups, period. After 7 weeks, everyone has crossed the line of doing one hundred pushups in a day. I have no doubt we will reach the stretch goal of being able to do one hundred pushups without stopping, too. That is leadership by example!

Accountability, Time Management, And Scheduling

What made this transformation possible was the habit of doing pushups and someone to hold you accountable for doing so. I’ve had to be equal parts helping hand and butt kicker to keep the group moving forward, but we did it - and the reward has been people expressing amazement at their accomplishments, people who never thought they’d be able to do anything like that. Some folks needed to just get into the habit of doing an exercise routine regularly and frequently. Other folks had to make room in their daily lives and even give something up to accommodate the new habit, but they did it - and they’ve achieved goals beyond what they imagined possible. 

There is so much right now in the world that isn’t under our control. We have little control over the macro issues of the day, from natural disasters to pandemics and more. But we do have control over our habits, and what we make time and commitment for. What goals are you working towards right now, even with everything going on? What habits do you have that reinforce your progress towards your goals? What habits do you have that are undermining your progress towards your goals? Keep asking yourself these questions if you want to be a top tech startup leader today and tomorrow.

Lead In Technology

With the help of these simple suggestions and expert advice, you can develop new skills and enhance what's already existent to lead your tech team to success.

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