Mark Pearl

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Establish up front how the mentoring relationship is going to work

It seems obvious but I’ve seen the impact of not establishing this upfront. Some of the things you want to clarify…

  • Why do they want you as their mentor
  • How often you will meet
  • What are you aiming at
  • How will we know when it’s over

Knowing the framework for the relationship will avoid some awkward situations. I’ve seen a mentoring relationship go on for several months longer than it needed to because the mentee didn’t know how to tell their mentor they wanted a change.

Catch up reguarly

Agree on a metric for measuring your grads learning pace at the start of the process and commit to using it every week (e.g. if we had looked at a graph of learning zones each week we would have been able to easily see whether to push more info in or back off)

Define the structure of weekly catchups early - we didn’t have a strong structure to these and so they became a bit wishy-washy towards the end.


Seven Tips for Junior Developers
Developers mentoring and other practices I’ve seen working well, ycombinator

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