Software development is the combination of the art and science. The leadership skills in this field should not be compared to any other domain of the industries. A good leader knows how to move his development team by leading from the front, the software development team members will be sensitive if the leader who is leading does not know much about the technology.
They always look for such leaders who can “walk the talk” on the technology and fulfill his commitments. He also should know how to remove the blockage or obstacle in the technical anomalies. A successful software development team relies on each and every team member, the following concerned points must be addressed by the leader for a successful software application or any enterprise product.
1) Respect Formula
Introduce “Respect each other formula” and show them “each member has a great value in the software development process”.
2) Skill Identification and Delegation
Delegate generously by identifying and understanding each team member. A leader must know who are weak and powerful in what key skills. The appropriate use of their skills will increase the chances to complete the project within or before the deadline.
3) Always be Positive and healthy attitude
He should always be a motivator especially when team morale is down. He should have a positive attitude to show them a true vision of the output from their development.
4) Faith and Discipline
Promote Discipline within the team but at the same time tackle their issues creatively. Introduce healthy discussion and have faith on your disciplinary ideas.
5) Sharing Code and Knowledge
Give them proper roles and teach them the art of sharing software development code by introducing “Coding Standard” which will enable all team member to follow same patterns and ethics.
6) Be a part of the solution
If the team is behind the schedule then it’s better to trust their wisdom as well. They sometimes stuck in a bug or an issue which needs time, in this kind of situation make sure to sit with them to understand the issue. If you can remove this obstacle by your hand then you should take the driving seat to do so. Doing this you will surely earn the respect from your junior.
But if you would say that you don’t care what the issue is and you are more certain to get this thing resolve then it can be a minus point for you; there is a difference between a wise leader and a dictator. Remember software development is a combination of art and science, so you have to be careful before choosing your decisions on such situations.
7) Never Underestimate the Power of a Presentation
Promote creativity and innovation in solving problems or producing the software. The UI/UX is the first impression goes to any individual who will buy the software. So you should use the designer and trust his wisdom by engaging team members with him. Such engagement will open user-centric issues and innovation to solve them.
8) Appreciation in front of the Big Boss
A good leader should appreciate and give credit for what his team deserves, especially in front of the management. There are many so-called leaders who become stingy in situations where they find their higher management.
9) Sometimes NO
Say “NO” to the management on the scheduled plans especially when they wanted to interfere your work by asking to “DO MORE”. Usually, developers don’t like if anyone would tell them that your work is not up to the expectation. Software Development is not a labor work, being a leader you must propagate it professionally to your management in order to defend your team. Your schedule, plans, and outputs should not be a victim of the corporate interference.
10) Second Chance
Evaluate the work in the end and give the team member a chance to improve himself. There are many situations when the junior resource will sound like a nonprofessional. In such situation, it is better to sit with them and discuss with them the situation. The self-correction is important for any resource to get change.
11) Champion preacher with Zero Ethics
If you find any developer who has a negative attitude and who propagate himself as a champion of everything, then simply fire him.
In software development, such people are not useful but they are here for making the environment unhealthy and bad. Choose wisely when hiring your team member, a good team member can bring positivity which can ignite the development faster.
12) Defend Yourselves and Kill the Politics
Being the leader you have to defend yourself too, you might face such times when you will be escalated behind by your own resources. If these escalations are unjustly propagated then there is a good chance that someone in your team is trying to politicize the situation to gain his own benefits.
If you find such politics in the software development team, then kill the politics by keeping things calm and discuss with the management. If they have chosen you as a leader then it is a must for them to close the doors to entertain such ignition of such negativity.
It is the role of the higher management to give the respect to the chosen leader, If they don’t trust the leader then it’s better to leave the organization. The team with politics or personal agendas can never create wonders.
13) Always be “Geek”
Being the leader you don’t need to be a 100% geek but you must know the trends in the technologies where they are heading to. A good software development leader always studied new programming languages, technologies or trends globally. They do not stick to the old tradition but always tries to bring new technique and strategies in their processes. Even if the speed is gradual it should be always progressive.
14) The fight between QAE and SE
Never ignore the power of Quality assurance engineer. The quality comes when you have critics, so always be ready to accept critics. Teach your team to respect the QAE and help them to learn and collaborate with them professionally. The fight between Quality assurance engineers and software engineers will always be healthy and it will promote to learn from each other.
Software development is not a labor work or service oriented work. It required logics, maths, conditions, and art. In the end, it required a good leader to execute it properly, from my perspective he should follow these 14 points. These points can be varied and there is no restriction in bringing more better ways to optimize your executions.