“People don’t get opportunities to grow in accordance with their potential, they get it in accordance to where they happen to be standing.”
Everyone has heard about, in some form or another, the model of growth where you alternate between your comfort zone and stress zone and eventually attain a zig zag path of upward growth. But what actually helps people grow?
Jocelyn Goldfein breaks down the lifecycle of engineers - entry, senior, staff, and luminary - and identifies specific ways that managers can help employees of various stages reach the next level. She also debunks the popular myth that staff engineers are born and not made, emphasizing that while it does take innate potential and work ethic to get to that level, it also largely has to do with the environment they are in.
Lastly, she offers a great hack for managers to inventory the potential on their team and from there, deliver opportunities for individuals to rise to the occasion.