I am a test engineer working in Bangalore. I have a good experience of 6 years on Testing, tools and Sqa. I have managed teams of 1-3 people. As of now, my career is in a good shape.
But am quite confused as how to take it further in a progressive way. To get to a Lead/Manager position, what should be my road-map. I solicit some good advices from experienced Test Leaders/Architects/Managers.
Learn more about negotiating skills and project management. Once you get to the "upper layers" (middle management) from the technical side (testing and Lead positions) you will be dealing with a different mindset and political situation.
You need to be able to speak to the situation and understand the workings of that layer. If you keep talking in technical terms you will be in deep water, by talking in business terms you will have a better chance of success.
Been there and done that, and I have the bruises from some hard lessons to prove it. Good luck.
Jim's advice is great - only one thing to add - look the part - if everything else is right or while you are working on that look at the people at the next level and start dressing like them - see what they do differently and start doing these things.
To do this you should find a respected person to use as a model not someone who is not very good.
I appreciate Jim's advices and the rest too.
Wish if somebody could suggest a few courses and books that could help too. I do realize its more like experiencing and learning, but if I could do something to enhance my skills, it would just increase my confidence.