From Developer To Manager And… Back Again? Why Now’s A Good Time!

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So, you downed the tools to advance your technical career with a role in management. Was it all you hoped and dreamed it would be? 

Managing people when your heart is happiest creating code can be a clunky adjustment – especially if your workplace hasn’t provided you with the skills and training to perform this entirely different role to the best of your ability. At times, you probably felt like you were a butterfly swimming in a pool of lime jelly.

So, this blog is for all the developers out there who’ve been missing their spark, pondering their life choices wanting to reconnect with purpose. With the market as hot as it is, now could be the best time for you to return to your developer roots.

It’s an insanely hot market for developers right now

Like, scorching. We’re placing a huge amount of developers and fielding high volumes of client requests for developers every week! Salaries and contract rates have increased by 30% on average over the past 2 years, as anxious employers scramble to attract qualified developers to their roles. That’s because now, every business is a technology business!

Everyone wants in on that tech action. 

The challenge? A lack of mid-level developers to execute on all these projects. 

The opportunities are ripe for picking, but are they ripe for you?

Figuring out if the switch back to dev is right for you

We’ve seen a similar theme emerge in transformation and project roles, where higher level executives have taken a strategic step back to return to their sweet spot of problem solving, practical application of their crafts, and again taking on the rewarding responsibility of mentoring juniors.

Here are some questions to ask yourself to work out if switching back is the right move for you:

How much do I miss coding on a scale of 1-10?

If you’ve been crying into your fruit loops every morning, dreading another day behind your desk managing human dramas and budget blowouts, then it could be time to reassess your priorities and career goals.

Did I move into management *just* for the pay rise?

It’s difficult to progress in some organisational structures unless you’re prepared to climb the hierarchical ladder into leadership. But switching into leadership can mean giving up what you love and are best at, to help other people get better at what you love and are best at. Do you remember why you switched?

Because if you’ve been feeling major dreamy heart eyes for code and your primary motivation to take a leadership role was the salary bump, it’s a great time to check the market. Find out how much you could earn stepping back into your happy place.

Am I feeling disconnected from my purpose?

Do you miss perfecting your precious? Do you float through your days dreaming of taking control of ‘your’ code or learning new tech skills to satiate your curious brain, but you're suffocated by the energy-zapping meetings and processes always getting in the way? 

If you’ve taken on a management role, given it a red hot go but feel in your bowl of fruit loops it just isn’t right for you, there’s no need to worry. There are people who’ve successfully made the switch into management and back again.

Hey, some people just *love* the code.

If you’d like to confidentially explore opportunities and get a feel for the market, reach out to Andy Hong – andy@talenza.com.au!