I have been working at my current company for ~5 years now and has been a key technical contributor and then an Engineering Manager leading the core technical team of the company.
We have developed a few products so far based on our niche technology (we are building hardware). The products have had mediocre success, due to late entry to market and reduced performance (even with lower cost) in a market where a premium is put on performance and standard compliance.
Now we are launching into a new product development cycle. After feasibility studies, I have come to the conclusion that we would barely be able to do it and have to anticipate significant delay compared to impossible timeline given by management. In addition, I feel like this product is going to end up with similarly lukewarm market response.
My boss doesn't understand technology, so any technical issues would be shouldered by me. For this reason, I have been communicating potential issues with management. The response is that we must do this product for the survival of this company. So this is a very serious program.
Now I come to think about the next 2 years of my life, it's kind of going to suck a lot. We would be working on something not very exciting, with exacting specifications we would barely meet with luck, and high chance of program delays, on top of that life and death of the company kind of depends on it. I see little upside in this and feels like this is a suicide mission.
I've been thinking about leaving the company, due to this and other issues that I am not happy about and wasn't able to influence to change in the past a couple of years.
If I quit, my biggest concerns are the following:
- Leaving my team hanging
- Being perceived as a captain abandoning the boat when it is sinking
- Burning bridges with management
Perhaps I'm not thinking this straight, would like to get your advice on how to proceed in the best way.