Hannah Olukoye: Engineering Manager, TaxFix
Becoming An Engineering Manager, Moving to Europe, And Leveraging Mentorship
Hannah Olukoye is based in Berlin, Germany. Hannah transitioned into her current new role with Taxfix as an engineering manager from a Software Engineer background, developing versatile mobile applications on Android. She is a Google Developer Expert for Android who mentors other women in technology, writes technical articles, and speaks at technical conferences to motivate others to pursue careers in IT. When she is not working on technology, Hannah loves to try out baking recipes she finds online. She also volunteers as a board member for the Samburu Girls Foundation serving as vice president of the board.
Transitioning to an Engineering Manager Role
Hannah's transition from an individual contributor (IC) to an engineering manager was inspired by a former manager who served as a great role model. She first promotion was to an interim manager role, which gave her an opportunity to learn and prove herself. When she took on a full-time manager role first the first time at her new company, the transition required her to shift her focus from coding to people management. She highlighted the importance of being aware of this shift and being willing to let go of day-to-day coding tasks. Hannah emphasized that collaboration is key and that it is necessary to reach out for help from other managers and engineers. Hannah shared that her company, TaxFix, was open to giving her mentorship and guidance as she grew into her new role.
Hannah's Recent Move to Germany
Hannah's move to Germany was an exciting opportunity for her to work with TaxFix, a company that enables people to file their taxes. Despite the challenges of starting a new job and moving to a new country, Hannah credits her company's culture for allowing her to have a work-life balance that prioritizes family. Her manager even reminds her that she is a “parent first”.
When Hannah moved to Germany, the face-to-face interaction with her managers and the engineers she has been working with has really helped improve how they have been working. She also highlighted that it is challenging to make so many different life changes at once, but she is taking it as an ongoing work in progress.
Hannah has always prioritized continuous learning and mentorship throughout her career. She has taken courses online and has been taking manager-focused courses on platforms such as LinkedIn Learning. Additionally, mentorship sessions have been incredibly valuable, allowing her to gain insights from experienced managers and leaders.
Hannah shared that she has at various points in time worked with life coaches and mentors who have been in the same path as hers, such as people who are managers, CTOs, and VPs of engineering. She believes that they have so much wealth that they can share down. Hannah has also found platforms such as CoffeeChat and mentorship circles to be helpful in her journey.
In summary, Hannah's experience highlights the challenges and rewards of transitioning to an engineering manager role, the importance of finding a company with a culture that prioritizes work-life balance, and the value of continuous learning and mentorship. Hannah's insights remind us of the importance of collaboration, reaching out for help, and being open to different opportunities. Her experience also highlights the significance of finding the right mentorship and learning platforms to upskill oneself. Aspiring managers and leaders can learn from Hannah's experience and use her insights to grow their careers in technology and leadership.