Being a technical leader is somewhat of an art. Not everyone can be an effective and influential leader. While being an effective leader is difficult, becoming an influential technical leader is even harder.
As a technical leader, you have the responsibility to take your team to the next level. You have to do everything to keep them moving forward.
In addition to leadership skills, you also need to have strong communication skills and sound technical experience. But technical experts are not always good technical leaders.
As a technical leader, your responsibilities don’t just remain limited to technical skills. You have a big team that works for you and looks up to you for inspiration.
If you are able to inspire your team, then you have done your job.
1. Management ≠ Leadership
Management and leadership are not the same. You can only ascend from the position of a technical manager to a technical leader if people follow you.
The more influence you have on them, the more they will be inspired by you.
While management and leadership are not the same, they go hand in hand. You will have to be a manager in some instances and an inspiring leader in others. Finding a balance between these two is the key to success.
2. Help Your Team
As mentioned before, you need to inspire people if you wish to be a successful technical leader. Help your team whenever you can and however you can. Emerge as a problem-solver for everyone.
Your team should be able to look up to you and seek you out for reviews.
If you want to be an influential technical leader, then you should never be too busy to help your team. You are not an influential leader if your team is not producing excellent work.
The performance of your team reflects a lot on your influence and effectiveness as a leader. So help them when needed and let them outshine themselves.
3. Communication is Key
You can never become an influential technical leader if you don’t communicate with your team. It is imperative to become a competent communicator first if you want to be a good leader.
The best way to improve communication is by choosing face-to-face communication whenever you can.
This adds a human element to the discussion. Your team members will be able to connect with you better. Once that connection is established, they will trust you and your leadership decisions.
4. Let Ideas Float Freely
Many technical leaders make the mistake of insisting that their teams can’t pitch ideas and that ideas flow through them only. This curbs innovation.
The more autonomy you give to your teams, the better results you will get. Let them discuss ideas freely without asking them to run it through a proper channel first.
This will be good for your company and will help you build rapport as a leader.
You cannot become an influential technical leader until you build trust among your followers. And that is only possible with transparency.
As a leader, you should promote a company culture based on transparency.
Only then will your followers start trusting you. You can’t hide things from your team just because you fear their negative reaction. You need to understand that they are adults and should be able to handle it.
The team wants to follow someone who is competent, confident, and transparent. They will follow you if you believe in them and don’t hide anything from them.
6. Trust Your Team
“Train people well enough so they can leave. Treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” ― Richard Branson
As a technical leader, you don’t have to do things yourself. However, you should be able to convey your vision and communicate your mission to your team.
You should also trust them with the execution of your goals. All of this is interlinked. You must communicate with your team and develop their skills so that you can trust them to do the right thing.
You should also build an environment where failing is not stereotyped. It should never be seen as the end of things. In fact, tell your team to learn from their mistakes and start again.
Encourage them to be creative and let them work hard to show their full potential. Tell them that failures are a part of the process but that improvement is key.
When your team knows that you trust them, they will give their best efforts. They know that you have their back. This will improve your relationship with them, and you will be considered an influential technical leader.
7. Write a Blog
If you want to be an influential technical leader, you must spread your knowledge. It has become easier to spread knowledge thanks to blogs.
If you don’t have a website of your own, you may write as a guest blogger on other sites. You may also get help from writing services to help you come up with the best topics and create content that matters.
Use the power of the internet to let the world know about your knowledge and ideas. This will expand your range of influence, and more people will become your followers.
8. Never Stop Learning
A technical leader has to keep up with the latest technologies and techniques more than anyone else. There are so many innovations every day. You must keep yourself updated so that you know what someone is talking about.
Learning never stops for technical leaders. You will only be able to comment on something if you know what someone is talking about. Your followers look up to you for advice and suggestions.
Keep learning and implementing the latest technologies in your organization so that your team members can follow.
9. Embrace Change
You can never be an influential leader if you don’t welcome change. As mentioned before, technology is improving every day. You will only be left behind if you don’t embrace change.
You should also advocate for change. This will make you influential in both your company and other organizations.
10. Create More Leaders
You should also use your position to develop more leaders rather than more followers. As Tom Peters said, “Leaders don’t create followers. They create more leaders.”
Thus, you should focus on the personal and professional development of your team members to create future leaders.
Becoming an influential technical leader is not as difficult as it sounds. You have to be knowledgeable in your field and acquire a few social skills to reach your goal.
There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution for businesses that are looking for great content.
Your marketing goal, target audience, the industry you operate in, the size of your organization, and even the platform you plan to publish the content on make a difference in your requirement.
How Can You Become an Influential Technical Leader?
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