gldmsย inย ย 
DevOps Engineerย 2 years ago

Taking up initiative

What do VPs of Tech/Managers mean by this? What are they exactly looking for?

First I have heard this from my previous manager personally when asking for a raise. It was a bit shocking for me, as I was consistently providing AND implementing solutions for the epics I picked on or was assigned to. They failed to give me a clear answer for this, only a vague statement that I should be the one going to them with proposals or what not.

Today I heard this again at my current place, an early stage startup, from the new VP of Tech during a fireside meeting, and I felt it might be related to me. My pov:

The guy joined a month ago, and as one of his first tasks picked one, for which I had personally taken the time to create the epic and all the related stories, but as in the big mess of a startup, has been waiting in the backlog, while I have been working on 2-3 other high priority topics, again providing AND implementing solutions, that more often that not, require more time than expected.

He came in fresh, got some of my time and expertise, managed to create some plausible results to present, and a couple of minutes later, I hear the famous phrase once again, "People should take initiative".

Can somebody please help me understand what is expected in this kind of situations?

19g616l0r1i817Backend Software Engineerย 2 years ago
I think in the examples you've provided you have demonstrated taking initiative. More importantly, these examples show leadership incompetencies.

They are claiming people should take the initiative to deflect from their own inability to prioritize business objectives. That's not your fault, but it may be an indicator about the growth potential (or lack thereof) of that organization.

Tl;dr it's not you, it's them.
gldmsDevOps Engineerย 2 years ago
Thank you!
This has been bothering me for a long long time, in the span of years, and I got really concerned when it came up again in the current org.
Like when they say it to you twice, it might be an issue with you, right??
However, what you say is more or less what the voice in the back of my had has been saying.