Career Progression Shouldn’t Always Mean Management

Dr Stuart Woolley
CodeX
Published in
5 min readJun 3, 2022

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Progressives thrive on technical ability, not filling in spreadsheets or making slides. Also, what’s this about a ‘career’ ?!

Photo by Sebastian Herrmann on Unsplash

I wrote previously about Progression Syndrome — a condition I loosely defined as the actions of someone, usually a hard working and knowledgable developer, who accidentally drifting into management because they thought they should be taking on more responsibility and work as they tend to finish their tasks early.

Obviously this is a terrible waste of a great, and most likely extremely progressive, developer as their excellent technical skills will inevitably atrophy away leaving only acute skill in adjusting font size and colour is some banal and bloated presentation software¹.

Career progression is something continually touted by denizens of management, and commonly HR, as a positive thing in the grand game and they aggressively encourage the taking on of ‘additional responsibility’ on a regular basis.

Performance reviews and their associated inane goal setting exercises are, I believe, are also a common cause of losing valuable developers to the torpid treacle whirlpool and management.

The Peter Principle

Let’s refresh our minds about a key principle at work in the grand game of software…

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Dr Stuart Woolley
CodeX

Worries about the future. Way too involved with software. Likes coffee, maths, and . Would prefer to be in academia. SpaceX, X, and Overwatch fan.