How do you manage dual roles? What does your dual role look like?

This is a great question from @jenbauer, with super helpful replies from @utchbe and @ajwilson.

:link: Link to the original post on LinkedIn.

It got me thinking not only about triaging yet also about how we manage dual roles on a day-to-day basis.

I once worked as a QA Manager (focusing on growing a team) and a Release Manager. Both were related yet very different. I used to spilt my time as equally as I could yet in hindsight I probably couldโ€™ve used a model or two to give me options as to how I could better manage my time and efforts.

How about you, do you have dual roles? If so, how do you manage your efforts?

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I was in similar shoes as Jen, for a few months. I was a tester on a cross-functional mobile development team. For the remaining 20 hours in the week, I was in the application support team, doing bug triages daily for the issues reported by 2nd level support. I also met a few testers who are also doing the role of a scrum master, but usually for their own team.

The biggest issue with being in two roles, or in two (or even more) teams, is the context switching, which really negatively impacts performance, itโ€™s terrible for your focus and ultimately it makes me less effective. So my advice would be to have dedicated time slots for each of the roles, it may not be possible always to have dedicated 4h chunks for both maybe, but, it could be one or two hours working on one project and then switching to the next one and so on. Also, you might want to try using a Pomodoro timer for shorter dedicated work sessions.

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How about you, do you have dual roles? If so, how do you manage your efforts?

Iโ€™ve been in several switching weekly between them:

  • develop, release and delivery, operations, technical support, testing, automation, business analysis, project management, data analysis, system analysis, content management;

My priorities were:

  • is there anything urgent where support to the clients is needed?(business first)
  • is the team, internal or external, needing support to be able to complete the work?(developing together)
  • are there stakeholders that we need to keep happy where some agreements were made?(stakeholder management)

Of course going in a role meant some other thing that I was not doing would impact something.
But that was fine if itโ€™s importance was lower at that time.

And I have also suffered from all the possible negative effects which come with a switch.
It was then helpful to pair, or have my work reviewed by some colleague at times, or even just inform the senior members about things I was contributing to;