"I stopped coding to manage developers in a bank and now I can't find a job"
I have two decades' experience as a technologist in an investment bank. However, I am not a developer. My specialism is managing developers. Now that I have lost my job, I am finding that this is not a skill that is much in demand.
I stopped coding a decade ago, because although I wasn't bad at cutting code, I knew that I wasn't great at it. I decided to focus on my strengths, which are managing senior developers and making sure that teams get stuff done. It was easy to do that in banking: every software team has someone who removes blockers, organizes workflows and goes to meetings. That person was me.
Now that I am no longer needed by the bank, I am finding that this role doesn't appear to exist in smaller fintech firms or in hedge funds. They don't seem to have developer managers, just senior developers who manage themselves. This is particularly the case at hedge funds, where all the roles I see are for people who are at least 80% hands-on.
What do I do? It seems too late for me to go back into coding, and I wasn't that good at it anyway. Banks aren't hiring much at the moment, and the firms that are hiring don't seem to have space for someone like me. - I think this is a mistake on their behalf: in my experience, when you let developers do what they want, they develop the wrong things as they often have insufficient understanding of the business.
Alan Collins is a pseudonym
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