I've been reading a very good book from our chairman's reading list called Open Leadership by Charlene Li. The book has got me thinking about being a manager in technology. Many of us have risen through the ranks due to our technical expertise and our ability to design and implement solutions for technical and business problems. As we become managers we are constantly faced with letting go and having others do the work we prided ourselves on being so good at. I struggled for a long time with letting go of coding, now my struggle is letting go of designing the solutions.
Open Leadership is really driving home the point that I need to let go of the solution. As a technology leader I need to ensure that my team is focused on the right problems and empower them to come up with solutions. Part of empowering them is allowing them to fail safely. As someone that has prided themselves on delivery it is scary to step back and give up the reigns. The irony is my hold on the reigns is purely imaginary. Once I stopped coding every day, I still write some code, I had already given over the reigns to developers more talented and capable than I.