Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Lead Vs. Follow

It is written that a great leader is not only good at leading, but following too. The same rule can be applied to coders. Sometimes you take the lead over a design when you feel the passion and other times you let someone else take the reigns. The important thing is not to feel the need to always be the one in charge. Let others lead.

Following does not mean to blindly go over the cliff, but to question and suggest. Realize that the person leading has the final decision. Without a clear leader, tug of wars result in code decay of the worst kind. Trust your team partner, but make sure your communication is clear when you disagree.

Too many times developers get into the mindset of always wanting to be the lead dog. Resist the urge. Learn to standback, do things differently, and most importantly grow and learn from doing a design differently. You will also gain the respect and admiration of your team. If you want people to support you, you must support them too.

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