in reply to IT Management, outsourcing & technical skills

I think a lot of your statements are accurate, but most of them are /perceptions/. There will be many technical people who will be good at management, have decent interpersonal skills, have an awareness of business needs, and might even want to be managers. After having been placed in the position of team leader a few times, I find that I really don't want to do what the higher-level managers do (in fact, I find it hard to stay awake at a long meeting on a topic which /seems/ unrelated to work. This is a poor management practice. However, I did well enough at the job for more than one company giving me 'adequate' ratings in job reviews. I preferred the 'excellent' ratings I got when doing development). However, I've seen other technical people who were good at it -- when given the chance. To me, that seems to be the biggest stumbling block to technical people becoming managers. Most managers seem to me to be reluctant (for various reasons) to tell the technical people about the business issues that influence their decisions. In my experience, most technical people really appreciate being given that business information, and can be quite loyal to a manager who listens to them and describes why they might make any decisions. Our company has started sharing annual report information such as profits attributed to each department, financing decisions, and so on, with the R&D department (where I work), and although many of us grumble at being away from our work to hear that information, they also seem much happier to have it than they were when a more traditional method was used. Among other things, it makes us all very aware of how our decisions impact the company's bottom line. I've seen several people take more time about expense requests and dealings with vendors. All the kinds of things technical people usually get to avoid considering. --D