Speaker: Nicky Wrightson

(She / her / hers)

Ventures CTO @blenheimchalcot

Nicky has worked as an engineer for over 20 years over many industries. She is currently working as Ventures CTO for Blenheim Chalcot, a venture builder which believes in investing more than just funds but investing knowledge and experience, ideas and infrastructure to build new sustainable businesses. In her role she offers both organisational and engineering support to the businesses within the portfolio so that they can accelerate their growth. Prior to this Nicky has extensive technical leadership as a principal engineer at both Skyscanner and Financial Times where she led the delivery of operationally sustainable cloud native architectures.

Session + Live Q&A

The Secret Strategy for Landing That Staff Engineer Role

Historically, as engineers/developers became more senior, they hit a decision point — do I become a manager or an architect? Architecture tended to be the standard route for folks that wanted to stay focused on tech.

As engineering culture evolved, the adoption of dev ops and the cloud has led us to autonomous cross-functional teams where architecture is something team members do, rather than a separate role. This has left two problems: firstly, what path is available for engineers who want to remain focussed on the tech, and secondly, who is responsible for the holistic wide-angle view of the technical direction, particularly where that crosses multiple teams. 

In this talk, I will share my expertise from having several different senior IC roles to give insight into the possible routes of staff plus role, including my path and what you need to make yourself a great candidate for getting that staff plus role. I will also explore what a staff engineer role is, and some of the problems in the wider industry. At the end of this talk, you should be able to identify if this path is definitely for you, have some examples of routes to get there, and understand the pitfalls if you follow the individual contributor route. 


Tuesday May 17 / 12:20PM EDT (50 minutes)


Staff-Plus Engineer Path


LeadershipTraining / Certification

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