At Ockam we value our High Performance Team. It is the responsibility of The Team to provide an environment where every individual is empowered to be world-class in their role and to enable individuals to achieve more than they could dream possible for themselves. This level guide helps us to align expectations and to create a framework where we have a common language to describe growth paths.
You can find open roles on The Team here.
Think of this matrix, holistically, from left to right. For example, a
Level 4 Senior Engineer would be a master at the characteristics of an
Engineer and bring strong repeatable competence into their role as a
Sr Engineer. The qualities in the column of
Level 5 Principal Engineer can be used as a guide to grow new skills.
What we do is who we are. We bring this philosophy to our engineer roles. Because we are a small and growing team we spend most of their time completing tasks regardless of our level. A
Level 7 Architect is responsible for exploring their space, defining a set of problems, then picking a solution, before building / shipping the tasks.
|Engineer||Senior Engineer||Principal Engineer||Architect||Senior Architect|
|Level||1 - 2||3 - 4||5||6 - 7||8|
|Responsibility abstraction||"Complete Tasks"||“Find Solutions”||“Define Problems”||“Explore Spaces”||“Envision Frontiers”|
|Complexity of role|
|Personal Growth Plan Focus||“Learning”||“Practicing”||“Teaching”||“Empowering”||“Industry influencer / Luminary”|
|Level||5||6 - 7||8|
|Responsibility abstraction||“Ship the Code”||“Empower the Team”||“Create the Product”|
|Complexity of role|
|Personal Growth Plan Focus||“Teaching”||“Empowering”||“Industry influencer / Luminary”|
It is assumed that an engineer at a high level would still focus on all of the attributes associated with levels that they’ve already surpassed in their career. For example, even though "Learning" is a Level 1 | 2 focus, everyone should be on a virtuous learning cycle, even at Level 8.
The converse is also true. A lower level engineer is likely to check several boxes at levels 1 or 2 above their current level. This is particularly true on our small team. Everyone should have stretch tasks as part of their role.
Poor code quality. Not self-motivated; needs someone to tell them what to do next. Constantly veers into the weeds. More inclined to blame-complain than roll up sleeves. General helplessness. Disregards team process.
Disappears into projects that don’t matter to the business. Fails to identify or communicate big roadblocks. Us-vs-them attitude. Continually underestimates timelines. Doesn’t take operational excellence seriously. Solutions are more complicated than necessary.
Arrogant jerk. Doesn’t delegate. Always says "yes" and suffers burn-out. Jumps into execution without careful consideration. Lets details slip through the cracks. Fails to raise awareness of projects at risk or people-problems. Doesn’t follow new technologies or industry trends. Thinks that some work is ‘beneath them’.
Over-emphasis on scaling or high availability far beyond business needs. Spends too much time chasing the newest "shiny" technology simply to satisfy ego. Doesn’t collaborate or ask questions. Condescending. Has a “pet” agenda. Pisses off senior leadership.