EM to Senior EM to Director - how was your transition ?

May 4 4 Comments

How did your responsibilities change ?

How did your relationships with other managers compare to relationships with engineers as was the case earlier ? or with EMs vs Senior EMs ?

How did the day to day activities change ?

Are you looking now more at finance / budgeting now as opposed to deliverables ? For Directors it would be a lot of finances and large projects I presume

EM now - TC 200K 🙁

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TOP 4 Comments
  • Amazon amazons
    EM is mostly about delivery and people development. You are expected to be in the details and know your teams programs inside and out. You’re hiring and mentoring a range of team members from new grads to seniors.

    Sr Mgr is a leader in transition; delivery is still important but driving the right strategy, putting mechanisms in place to help the team scale, and developing other leaders become much more important. You’ll be spending more time with Principals and other Managers, and it’s a whole different ballgame helping leaders of that level grow. Mostly empowering them to deliver but checking in on bigger picture things like strategy and goals. As Sr Mgr you can pick and choose your spots when to dive deep but won’t have bandwidth to do it often. You must establish mechanisms that allow your leaders to scale.

    Director is about driving a long term vision and establishing a great team culture. Yes, at this level you’re dealing more with finance and hr than front line engineers. You are focused solely on strategy vs delivery, but need to learn how to pick and choose spots to audit, usually by asking the right questions.
    May 4 1
    • Amazon PeterPIPer
      Mostly agree. A director (in the FAANG scale sense) still needs to connect the long term vision to the milestones and deliverables from their managers and senior managers. You are dead on about the importance of auditing and finding gaps though. Directors also need to be able to set up processes that enable tracking success, identifying hot spots across many projects within their orgs.

      Other distinctions - senior managers have to be able to compelling hire strong senior level ICs and managers, and directors need to be able to recruit principal level talent and senior managers.
      May 4
  • Google / Ops Huhf13
    There is a big difference for these roles in FAANG vs non FAANG.
    May 4 1
    • OP
      Mind elaborating please ? I am talking in the sense of first line vs 2nd/3rd line managers more than the actual designations
      May 5