7 Most Influential Engineering Managers to Follow in 2021

Written by Team Zumvie

September 28, 2021

Being an effective engineering manager is tough. It requires regular self-reflection and continuous learning. To help engineering managers in this path of constant learning, several engineering management leaders share their knowledge by writing books, publishing articles, creating podcasts, and posting helpful tips on social media. 

In this article, we will introduce you to 7 of these engineering management leaders. You can read their blogs, follow them on social media, learn from them, and be a more effective engineering manager.

We will talk about the following engineering management leaders:


1. Andy Hunt

Andy Hunt is one of the most creative and innovative engineering leaders out there. A programmer by profession, Andy has combined his expertise in software development with his knack for management and consulting to motivate future engineering managers. He is a remarkable writer with over a dozen books to his name. Andy has created and manages Pragmatic Programmers — A bookshelf by developers for developers.

One of Andy’s best works is the Agile Manifesto which he co-authored with other professionals like Martin Fowler and Kent Beck. The Agile Manifesto covers the core principles of software development and management in an Agile environment, bringing the best practices together.

Andy Hunt’s blog is an excellent place to learn and stay updated about the intersection between software engineering and management. He also shares recent and relevant updates in engineering management on his Twitter, and he is worth following.

2. Ron Lichty

A look at Ron Lichty’s experiences is enough to establish his credibility in engineering management. Ron has over 25 years of experience in managing and directing software engineers. Learning from an expert like him can help you revolutionize your management strategies and be more effective in leadership.

Ron Lichty is also an established author. He co-authored the book titled Managing the Unmanageable, addressing the needs of modern engineering managers. Additionally, his blog highlights rules, tips, thoughts, and trends that engineering managers need to know.

If you’re interested in learning more about and from Ron, keep an eye on his future events. One such event, Managing Programmers, is coming up real soon. 

3. Camille Fournier

Camille Fournier, the Managing Director at Two Sigma, leads the engineering group and has years of experience managing technical teams. With a background in computer science and experience in leadership, she knows the pain points of modern engineering managers and how to address them.

Camille’s blog, Elided Branches, and Medium are excellent resources for aspiring and experienced engineering managers. She writes about the things that frustrate or have the potential to frustrate engineering managers. From Management Basics to tips on Guiding Critical Projects, you can learn a lot from Camille Fournier.

4. Gergely Orosz

Gergely Orosz has a variety of experiences in his portfolio. He has worked both as an engineer and as a manager at J. P. Morgan, Skype, and Uber. Currently, Gergely is working as an independent software engineer and a writer. He publishes quality content on The Pragmatic Engineer, sharing his thoughts and experiences with engineering managers.

One of the best ways to stay updated with Gergely’s work is to follow him on Twitter. He is a celebrated engineering manager on this platform with over 31k followers. Whether you are an experienced engineering manager or you’ve just started working as a manager, learning from the experience of Gergely Orosz is something that will help you advance your career at each step.

5. Marcus Blankenship

Currently working as the Senior Software Engineering Manager at Heroku, Marcus Blankenship is one of the most influential people in engineering management. Marcus focuses more on “the human aspects” of leadership, reflecting on his leadership and mentoring style. His podcast episodes are excellent proof of this.

Marcus Blankenship’s book Habits that Ruin your Technical Team is interesting and helpful for all modern engineering managers. Another great resource to learn from him is to follow his blog, where he publishes short but engaging articles for engineering managers.

6. Michael Lopp

Michael Lopp is a big name in the field of engineering management and leadership. He is currently working as the Engineering Leader at Apple and has previously worked at Pinterest and Slack. His connection with technology, leadership, and management is evident. Michael is one of those influential managers who coach aspiring engineering managers through his words and ideas.

Michael Lopp uses his pen name, Rands, for his blog writing and social media presence. His account on Twitter has over 41.5k followers, which speaks for his popularity in the discipline. He has also authored remarkable books, out of which “Managing Humans” and “The Art of Leadership” deserve special mention. The best way to keep learning with Rands is to stay tuned to his blog, where you’ll see numerous engineering management problems being discussed and solved.

7. James Stanier

The Director of Engineering at Shopify, James Stanier, is another name in the industry that you cannot miss. He is one of those individuals with a solid academic background (James holds a Ph.D.) and exceptional experiences to back the textbook knowledge. 

The Engineering Manager, written by James, is a book that every engineering manager should read, particularly if you’re just starting in the management role. The best way to stay updated with the latest thoughts and ideas from James Stanier is to follow him on Twitter.

Conclusion

Engineering management is a field where experience, technical expertise, and creativity are of extreme importance. In any management role, it is always a good idea to seek inspiration from experienced managers. 

The list of engineering leaders discussed in this article will help you irrespective of your experience in engineering management. Follow them on social media, read their quality work, listen to their thoughts, and you’ll see the difference in your management activities.

Do you follow some influential managers and leaders that we may have missed? Share your thoughts and recommendations with the community by joining Zumvie’s Slack. Listen to what others have to say and grow with the community, transforming into leaders of the future.

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