I've been in a managerial position. It's endlessly torturous and comes with a set of problems that cannot be solved in the same manner you would a technical problem. Why on earth would someone want to take on solving human problems AND technical challenges is unimaginable to me. I became a software engineer precisely to be an individual contributor, there is no way I'm giving up the primary benefit to make a little more money, it sounds like an entirely selfless position.
Haha thanks Eugene 🤣 - I probably had similar experiences to you in the beginning too - that's why early in my career I bounced between tech lead and individual contributor (IC) roles quite a bit. Eventually I got to be "ok" in the role.
It wasn't until later, when I was managing other tech leads that I had the opportunity to learn to do it better.
Learning from them and reflecting on my own experiences, my hypothesis is that it's very possible to do both and do it successfully. But that doesn't mean EVERYONE SHOULD by any means!!
Thanks for sharing that point of view though. Absolutely valid and I'm glad you found a role you're happy with!!
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