Yesterday I went out with some friends who work in tech too, and without asking for it, I ended up learning quite a bit about leadership and management on a San Francisco Friday night.
Spaceteam is a multiplayer iOS game with a very simple goal, to keep your spaceship from falling apart while blasting trough space.
To keep the spaceship from being outrun by an exploding star you have take turns with your teammates between telling instructions like “Set Capacitive Omegasphere to 2” and executing them (this one means moving up a slider on your screen to 2).
Leading a team is just like this, specially on a Lean startup or company. The role of a tech lead most of the time is not about executing the tasks (though you may do so), but figuring out a way of communicating these instructions to your team.
“Implement a leader board to drive the engagement in the basic customer segment” is an instruction as cryptic as “setting up the Finite Plexus to 3” and it involves Design, Engineering and Product.
Therefore your objective should be the same whenever you are creating an app, or fighting robot uprisings you need to find a way to work together… as a Space Team!
Every Spaceteam game begins with an instruction: “Don’t worry about steering the spaceship, it will do so by itself”. Which to me sounds like a Bill Walsh quote.
When building a team, focus on creating the right culture of trust, on moving fast and on breaking things, “The Score will take care of itself”
Good luck Spaceteam!