Profile PictureAnkita Kulkarni

The Engineering Leader's Playbook: The First 90 Days

4 ratings

I am a Senior Leader who has worked in Tech for over a decade, starting as a developer and an Engineering leader. I've grown to over 100 developers and managers (either through mentorship or managing them).

Most early or newly promoted Leaders aren’t sure how to succeed.

They continue to act like Individual Contributors (ICs) as they aren’t sure how to manage. If you plan & execute well in your First 90 days, it will set the tone for the rest of your leadership journey.

I led several teams over the years, and time and time again had to onboard myself, build trust, identify key players and stakeholders and overall achieve business results. This can be hard if you only lean on one-on-ones and onboarding sessions.

Taking control of my 90 days was what got me from a Developer to a Senior Engineering Leader. I used this exact playbook as part of every team I led.

What You'll Get

  1. A PDF e-book guide to take control of your First 90 Days of leading a team
  2. A Notion workbook or PDF to work alongside the e-book

Who this e-book is for:

  • Newer Engineering leaders with 0-2 yrs of experience
  • Tech leads or team leads or leads in any capacity
  • Aspiring Engineering leaders that are currently developers
  • Developers that are curious about what Leadership looks like

What's inside this e-book

This e-book has 6 chapters with action-packed content and takeaway exercises.

Chapter 0: Intro to The Leader’s Playbook

What is this e-book about? Understand why the first 90 days are crucial for your success as a leader/manager.

Chapter 1: Hit the ground running

Learn the importance of creating value early, establishing your mandate and planning the transition.

Chapter 2: Accelerate your learning

Define goals for 30, 60, and 90 days, learn how to manage stakeholders and understand the organization's vision.

Chapter 3: Secure Early Wins and Build Credibility

What are wins? What does an early win look like? How can you build credibility and trust early?

Chapter 4: Set expectations right

Identify org expectations, create alignment and learn strategies to build a good network.

Chapter 5: Build a high-performing team

Define a high-performing team, evaluate team performance using key metrics

🔑 Bonus: The Leader's Workbook

In addition to this e-book, you can also get a copy of my Notion workbook to put learning into practice immediately. This complements the e-book very well.


The Engineering Leader's Playbook includes a Workbook with 5 Notion Templates to accompany the material and give you some space to work through some key exercises we'll need to tackle.

5+ Template sections

46 Pages, 1.6MB E-book

Notion Workbook Guide (Sections in templates)

🤯 Lifetime Access to all future E-book Updates

You will get access to unlimited e-book updates, including,

→ Interviews with other Engineering Leaders (Currently, interviews are in progress)

→ Share the mistakes they made along the way so you can save time and speed up your growth.

→ New Templates to conduct your 1:1's, provide difficult feedback and more.

Refund policy

If you're not 100% satisfied with the purchase, or it's not what you were expecting, just reply to the download email within 30 days, and you'll get a full refund. No questions asked.

Praise from others

Fantastic book. In addition to the stated intent, I’m using the process to start a new role - Great exercises/questions. The process is fantastic for changing roles internally. The exercises draw out what aspects got you here, but now need to change for you to keep growing.

- Tonia Morison, Management of Change, MTM

This is super valuable for new managers; I’d say the 0-2 years of experience group!

I’m personally going through this period at work (currently just over 30 days), and this was a great TLDR; a reminder to stay the course around some outcomes that matter.

I have a colleague who just got promoted to Engineering Manager, and she’d benefit greatly from this, so I’m looking forward to when you open it widely. 🙌


The direction of this material is excellent.

The context for the material is something I like as it gives an introduction and makes you aware by highlighting different scenarios of being successful as a leader.

It also has notes to make you think deeply and adjust to your liking from each lesson. Making people write about things makes you reflect.

And lastly, the recommendation and the extras added in Notion would make me want to revisit the lessons and think of what I wrote if I ever become a leader in a company.

- TERI EYENIKE, Software Engineer / Technical Writer

I enjoyed this content. My biggest takeaway was going over the worksheets. It helped me communicate the overall goals to my team. Because I can break them down into simple questions, I can ask during a short meeting.

Also, the topic of early wins stood out to me a lot because highlighting those wins will give my team a chance to keep a steady momentum.


Ankita successfully led multiple teams to improve our engineering processes and system reliability. She championed her teams to own long-standing codebases that hadn't had active maintainers for a long time. She coached and sponsored me through many ambitious projects requiring cross-team collaboration and strong stakeholder management.

By working with Ankita, I learned how to be a more effective technical communicator and enabler for others. Above all, as a manager, she always advocated on my behalf for new growth opportunities and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

- STELLA KIM, Principle Engineer, Notch

I've found Ankita to be an invaluable resource in my growth. She really pushed me to showcase my work better, push for the things I want and focus on my own growth. Eventually, this led to me making it to a Senior Developer position and really owning my own career.

Taking the years of experience she's had she was able to help me navigate that difficult transition from an intermediate onward. I can't imagine many times I wouldn't go to her if I ran into issues so I highly recommend her. Outside that Ankita is also a talented developer and lead. This makes her a much better leader in my mind and she absolutely is.

- RAMAN LALLY, Senior Engineer, Shopify

Got questions?

Email me at Here is my LinkedIn and Twitter


Do I need to be leading a team to read this e-book?

No, even if you are curious about what leadership looks like, this e-book would provide a lot of value for you so you can hit the ground running when you are ready.

I'm not in Engineering but in Tech. Can I buy this e-book?

Absolutely! A lot of the examples used in this book are related to Engineering but anyone in Tech looking to grow into a Leader can read this e-book and find value in it.

What's the Refund policy?

You have 30 days to ask for a refund after purchase. No questions asked.

Can I share this book with my team?

You can buy the team license if you are planning to share. Otherwise, it's only meant for individual use only.

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The Engineering Leader's Playbook: The First 90 Days

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