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Wednesday, June 21 • 9:25am - 9:50am
Beyond the Code - The New Development Manager

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Today, development managers find themselves at a unique nexus – with one hand in the code and one hand out of it. Their job is no longer simply about managing a group of dedicated coders. Instead, they’ve become evangelists, marketers, support systems, product managers, scrum leads, internal intermediaries, and much more.

As a wearer of many hats, the modern development manager is the liaison between the development team and the many other departments within their organization, from the top levels of management to the sales and marketing teams. As a result, managers are now tasked with helping to break down organizational silos to consistently produce the best results possible.
Acquia’s Preston So manages the Acquia Labs team, a tight-knit innovation team of coding polyglots. In addition, he is scrum lead and product owner for the API-first Drupal team within the Office of the CTO (OCTO).  So can speak to the way the role of the development manager is becoming more and more diversified and the three critical traits managers will need going forward.
  1. Development managers need to be knowledgeable about architecture. They need to have visibility into everything from big-picture architectural considerations at 30,000 feet to nuanced coding conventions limited to a single line of code or even a single character.
  2. Development managers need to be knowledgeable about their team, but not simply who they are, what they’re working on, and how they work. Increasingly, development managers need to know about their team’s disparate work habits and how they contribute to a successful project; how these personalities can synchronize and disperse to accelerate progress; and how distinct identities and convictions can beneficially lend themselves to a cohesive whole.
  3. Development managers need to be knowledgeable about the overarching process, because they remain the first line of defense for their teams. As outside methods infiltrate and merge with the development team’s process, the manager must maintain a strong understanding of the overall project and strategy.
How will development managers evolve to meet the needs of today’s stakeholders? Now, it’s time for development managers to move beyond the code to become the multifaceted managers our industry needs more than ever before.

avatar for Preston So

Preston So

Development Manager, Acquia Labs, Acquia
Preston So has been a web developer and designer since 2001, a creative professional since 2004, and a Drupal developer since 2007. As Development Manager of Acquia Labs, the innovation lab featured in international press such as VentureBeat and ZDNet, Preston leads new open-source... Read More →

Wednesday June 21, 2017 9:25am - 9:50am EDT
Main Stage