What is a Lead Developer and What are their Skills?

In the world of programming you can come across many terms that we do not really know what they mean. Thus, it is important to be clear about what the different roles in this world refer to, and one of them is lead developer. In this post, you will learn specifically what a lead developer is and what skills he/she should have.

What is a Lead Developer?

A lead developer is a developer who is responsible for leading a development team.

Not only leading must they have skills in different programming languages, but they must also have social skills and knowledge in the development process. A lead developer must establish a technical vision, share it with the team and carry it out.

A lead developer is able to better understand the estimates by being close to the development team, but at the same time, coordinate with those involved in the project and serve as a glue between business and development without interrupting the work of the team.

Skills of a Lead Developer

Among the skills required to become a lead developer, the following can be found:

Global Vision

To become a lead developer it is necessary to know a wide and varied range of programming areas, from backend and frontend to web or mobile development, among other knowledge.

The central point is to know what each of them is for, what specific features they have or why they have been developed in a specific way. It is not about being an expert and mastering perfectly a language or tool, but to know the basics of several, to choose the most appropriate for each project.

Adaptation by Levels

A lead developer must know everything from data, to logistics or presentation to lead the creation of a new product. In addition to knowing how to adapt to each phase of the process such as the construction, deployment, maintenance and operation of the product.

Optimal Choice of Technologies

The great success of a lead developer is to know how to create software with the right languages and tools for each project. His function is to lead the development of new products related to each need or problem to be solved, with the appropriate tools and technologies.

Programming as Architecture

The main function of a lead developer is to design the appropriate software architecture for the project and the resources available to the company. The final success or failure of a software project is often decided in this first step.

Brainstorming in Code

A lead developer is good when he has the ability to process all his thoughts in code, rather than in words, and to talk about everyday situations in terms of algorithm and programming. An ability also linked to the interest in sharing and disseminating programming knowledge with others.


The goal of a lead developer is to find the best solution regardless of their personal preferences and with the ability to listen and empathize, with a positive attitude to assume mistakes and enhance the contributions of other team members.

We have explained what a lead developer is and the skills he/she must have to be a successful leader and be able to take projects forward with entire teams under his/her supervision. If you’ve any questions regarding this article let me know in the comment section.