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Top 8 Skills For Engineering Managers in 2023

March 31, 2023


min read

Valentine Steph

Top 8 Skills For Engineering Managers in 2023

Learn how to become an engineering manager and improve your engineering management skills to drive your company's growth.

Are you planning to make a transition from an employee to a manager or are you already there, but wondering what makes you a good engineering manager?

First of all, you need to learn what is the #1 skill that you need as a manager. And what are must-have skills for an engineering manager and an engineering leader.

In this blog, you will find the top 8 engineering management skills to succeed in 2023, as well as recommendations on how can an engineering manager improve.

Engineering management skills

When transitioning from a software engineer to an effective engineering manager, a specialist should know what skills a software engineering manager needs. Undoubtedly, one should have technical expertise and technical knowledge, in order to be able to manage the work of other developers and assess their work.

However, engineering leadership has a lot to do with people management and communication. So, developing effective communication skills, problem solving skills, project management skills, analytical skills, business management skills, as well as emotional intelligence is essential, too.

Ace AI has prepared the most complete and up-to-date list of skills an effective engineering manager should have and divided them into 8 main skill groups.

Top 8 engineering management skills in 2023:

  • People management
  • Technical skills
  • Communication skills
  • Project management
  • Knowledge management
  • Company skills
  • Team management
  • Personal skills
Engineering management skills
Engineering management skills

Now, let’s consider each group of skills engineering managers should have in 2023 in more detail.

People management

Engineering managers often face leadership responsibilities that require people management skills, such as hiring new team members, onboarding, holding regular assessments and 1-on-1 meetings.

One of the key responsibilities of good engineering managers is to provide developers with training and professional growth opportunities inside the company.

Technical skills

This group includes strong technical skills. Engineering managers must have a technical background and technical competence to be able to control the quality of the code, give constructive feedback, and communicate with the software development team in the same language. With no tech skills, a software engineering manager will hardly get the job done and solve technical problems.

Communication skills

Best engineering managers constantly upgrade their interpersonal skills. To effectively negotiate and quickly resolve issues in a dialogue managers need strong communication skills.

An effective communicator can understand the intentions and motivations of team members. This is where emotional intelligence is one of the important skills needed for an engineering manager role.

Project management

This group of skills is based on planning and control of execution. An engineering manager helps teams work together, solve problems, delegate tasks, and deliver the product in time.

Knowledge management

This skill is associated with the organization and collecting of knowledge and transferring it within the development team. It also includes the ability to maintain technical documentation.

Company skills

An effective engineering manager is responsible for the development team playing by the rules of the business. He or she should be perfectly aware of the company’s structure, its goals, and interests, as well as promote the company values and perform administrative duties.

Team management

An engineering manager must show himself or herself as a competent organizer, who can make sure the entire team is well-coordinated and autonomous. A good manager should be able to build a competent team, organize their workflow, and maintain team spirit and transparency.

Personal skills

The trickiest challenges are the personal ones: he or she should improve their skills in time management, decision making, and goal setting, as well as learn how to set priorities, to be effective as a manager.

Engineering management skills
Engineering management skills

You can use Ace AI Engineering Manager’s skills matrix to develop the skills.

Improve engineering management skills

So, how can an engineering manager improve and become a good engineering leader? The best way is to do it in practice. However, to get you on the right track in this issue, we offer a list of resources.

Engineering Management books

Ace has gathered a list of the most popular and practical books for engineering leadership recommended by experienced tech leaders.

Top 15 Engineering Management books:

  1. An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management
  2. Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs
  3. Harvard Business Review Manager's Handbook: The 17 Skills Leaders Need to Stand Out (HBR Handbooks)
  4. The Manager's Path: A Guide for Tech Leaders Navigating Growth and Change
  5. The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master
  6. Design Patterns: Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software
  7. Smart and Gets Things Done: Joel Spolsky's Concise Guide to Finding the Best Technical Talent
  8. Agile Software Development, Principles, Patterns, and Practices
  9. Extreme Programming Explained
  10. Test Driven Development: By Example
  11. Mythical Man-Month
  12. Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams
  13. Death March
  14. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team
  15. The First-Time Manager

Use Ace AI to add books on Engineering Management to your professional development plan and get personalized recommendations on learning materials.

Top mentorship platforms for Engineering Manager

One of the best ways to develop skills is to find a mentor, who has relevant experience and can provide professional support. Ace gathered the most popular mentorship platforms where Engineering Managers can find a good mentor in one article:

Find a Mentor: 12 Popular Mentorship Platforms For Software Developers, Product Managers, Designers

Online courses

In this article, you will find online course platforms for all tech roles including Engineering Management.

35 Online Platforms to Grow Software Developer Skills

Community for Engineering Managers

As an engineering manager, being part of a strong community can have a profound impact on your professional development and success. Community offers a wealth of benefits for engineering managers, including:

  • opportunities to network
  • co-learn
  • share knowledge
  • gain support
  • develop leadership skills

One of the most significant benefits of a community for engineering managers is the ability to network. Connecting with other professionals in your field can lead to new job opportunities, mentorship relationships, and collaborations on projects.

Another crucial benefit of being part of a community as an engineering manager is the opportunity to co-learn and share knowledge. Through conversations with peers and access to resources and events, you can expand your understanding of industry trends, best practices, and new technologies. Additionally, sharing your own expertise can help you develop your leadership skills and become a thought leader in your field.

Ace has its own community for engineering managers - Engin, a platform for professionals to connect, network, and learn from one another. Engin community offers access to regular meetups, interviews, and discussions, where members can share their knowledge, experiences, and challenges.

You can join Engin community in Discord for free.

To improve as an Engineering Manager, you can use Ace AI which analyzes skill gaps based on Git data and gives personalized recommendations on mentors, courses, and communities, and adds to your development plan.

AI for good engineering manager

The role of an Engineering Manager is critical in ensuring the success of a product. One of the key responsibilities of an Engineering Manager is to constantly improve the productivity of their engineering team.

To achieve this, they need to provide opportunities for their engineers to develop professionally, develop new skills, and stay up-to-date with the latest technologies. A good engineering manager should act as a mentor for their team, providing guidance and support to help them grow and excel in their roles.

This is where AI-powered training platforms like Ace AI can make a big difference. By leveraging machine learning algorithms and personalized training modules, these platforms can automate the training process and provide engineers with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed.

How Ace AI helps engineering managers mentor developers?

#1. Build career progressions

Ace AI uses git data to define the career path level of software engineers.

Connect Git and Ace AI identifies career level
Connect Git and Ace AI identifies career level

#2. Create development goals with personalized recommendations

Based on Git data, Ace AI automatically identifies skill gaps and creates development goals for each developer with personalized recommendations on mentors, courses, books, and other learning activities.

Personalized recommendations in Ace AI
Personalized recommendations in Ace AI

#3. Write feedback and hold regular 1-on-1s

Track the progress of professional skill development of the engineering team with automatic feedback and an agenda for your meetings in Ace AI.

Write automatic feedback for skills in Ace AI
Write automatic feedback for skills in Ace AI
Automatic agenda in Ace AI
Automatic agenda in Ace AI
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