When applying for a Senior Developer position after having experience as a Team Lead, what is the expectation of being perceived:
- as overqualified?
- as unsuccessful on current job?
Will mentioning that I was a Team Lead increase or decrease my chances to land a Senior Developer job?
Let's say company size/level is roughly the same.
Thank you in advance for your answers!
I am passionate about software development. I genuinely enjoy solving technical problems, learning new technologies, taking things apart and examining how they work on the inside.
I haven't always been a developer, for ~10 years I was working in a different area. At one point I realized that development is what I want to do, spent few years sharpening my skills and finally landed my first full time software development job.
I was excited. I was doing stuff I enjoyed doing - and have been paid for that! Job wasn't boring or meaningless anymore. There was no work/life dichotomy anymore - work WAS life.
I was more productive than several of my colleagues combined. I provided better code quality, and even though I did have a lot of knowledge gaps due to self-taught nature of by background, I learned new stuff very fast and covered them quickly. I was considered an excellent developer. Very quickly I have become a Team Lead.
And since then the "work is life" feeling is lost for me.
1. I don't have enough time to do things that make a spark in me
Team Lead job does bring interesting tasks and challenges. Making architectural decisions, implementing practices that improve process and product, etc. But this also brings a lot of responsibilities that I only mildly enjoy (e.g. resource management / planning, code review, mentoring) and, sadly, some that I actively abhor (e.g. dealing with nonsense like "OK, our customer wants to fully respec the requirements, they don't know what exactly they want, but it must be done today").
I have little to no time to do things that I like.
2. I don't feel confident on this position
Because of the fact that I have become a Team Lead too quickly I do not posses enough skills and experience to be a GOOD Team Lead.
My team is actually able to do the tasks that management throws at us. Management is actually pleased. But I still frequently find that I don't know something basic - things that virtually every other dev on my team knows. Also my social skills pretty much suck and it requires way more effort to improve them than my tech skills.
All in all, after being an excellent Developer I am now a mediocre Team Lead.
This is the reason I am considering moving to Senior position. However, I need to understand how employers will react to such move and build my strategy around that.
De facto I am a Team Lead and colleagues/management calls me a Team Lead. However on paper I am a "ведущий инженер-программист" which can be translated both as a Lead or Senior Developer. I am considering listing my current job experience on CV as Senior Developer and only briefly mentioning my Lead-related responsibilities or not mentioning them at all.