Levels.fyi Community
19g6xkw1caynf in  
Technical Program Manager a year ago

Only Two Get Promoted

Been working in tech for 20+ years as an eng, PM, and TPM (Comcast, Amazon). Through my career, it seems like there are only two positions that get promoted: Software Engineer and Product Manager.

I’ve seen SEs and PMs become Directors, EDs, and VPs over and over. Most recently as a TPM, that position feels very much like an org and career dead end.

Does anyone else find that to be true? Or have any advice on moving out of being a TPM? I would like to become a more senior manager and I feel like I have missed my chance.

19g6vkvllmyk3Software Engineering Manager a year ago
Most places consider PM and TPM in the same general bucket of talent. If you see PMs getting promoted, TPMs being promoted is definitely on the table. Keep in mind that SWE and PM and TPM are all individual contributor roles on their own career ladders. Management roles Ike the titles you mentioned are on an entirely different career track. The competencies and activities and qualifications are entirely different between SWE, PM, TPM, and management tracks. You can get promoted wiring your own career track, but switching from IC to management or vice versa is not inherently a promotion (generally speaking a switch between tracks comes at the same level or maybe a step lower).