Session 2 / Space D
Convener: Angela Williams
Manager of a team, looking for leadership roles within or outside the company. Need to find an opportunity and pitch myself for the role.
I’m not the one interested in the leadership positions, but recently found myself stepping into leadership roles a lot. Organization that sucks you in and then you work your way up the chain — area director, district director, etc. Eventually you’ll be interviewing candidates.
Preparation for an Interview
- It’s not about presenting your resume or career history. What got you where you are today is different than stepping into the role of a leader where you’ll be changing things, making recs, etc.
- Part of my prep for interviewing for an internal position, produced a functional resume. Instead of your career in terms of time/progress, how you became a leader. Focused on main areas of concern:
- growing/scaling the team,
- attracting people to the organization (recruiting fairs, resume workshops),
- business integration,
- technical leadership,
- internal/external presentations
- Product expertise
- Recruitment and talent, not just people management.
- Highlight how you’ve worked with other groups within the org, not just your own.
- Highlight how you’ve worked with third-party businesses, an ongoing relationship you helped strengthen or a new one you formed, or if you’ve evaluated other companies for relationships with yours
- How you’ve established best practices for technical issues — code reviews, automating something new, evolve technical processes, learn/teach new skills needed within your group
- Provide technical demos/concepts especially for people who are new to a technology
- Speak at conferences. At least once a year, try to give a talk, host a session outside of the company
- As a leader, you’ll need to be selling people on your ideas, and giving presentations is a way to demonstrate you can do that
Share your functional resume with the recruiter, but not with the interviewing team.
Behavioral Interview Experience
- Lots of different kinds of leaders — manage people up/down, change leader, thought leader
- Highlighted areas the company needs to work on, like UX
- If you’re looking at something external, pay attention to what tech blogs are writing, you can highlight some interesting fields that make sense to you.
- Find peers within the company who aren’t part of the group and get their feedback
- Two-on-one interviews. They shared the topic areas they were looking at.
Internal networking — maybe if you get a promotion or something else good happens, have a party. That’s a great way to connect with people within your organization but outside of your team.
What’s important — managing your team competently, getting your product done on deadline, making sure good people don’t leave. But that’s not always valued the way something like “vision” is.
Looking 5 years ahead in tech doesn’t always make sense, like who knows where we’ll be in five years? Especially now, given the multiple changes we’re in the midst of, we’re not in a closed system. The org exists in an ecosystem.