Beginning a distributed mentorship program at Mozilla

Hey all!

This is a thread to encourage folks to talk about Mentorship. The successful pathways begins with mentorship or buddies. There are quite a few examples of successful mentoring programs at Mozilla, but there can always be more.

I propose to use a distributed mentorship system like this one:
Basically, all you have to do is add a subdomain to your site that says that you are willing to mentor, what you’re willing to mentor, and how you want to do it.

I am proof that this is a successful program: I found my first tech mentor through it, and I would encourage everyone in every expertise who is willing to mentor at Mozilla to add the /mentoring button to their site or Twitter or Facebook.
After you’ve added the button, please add your name to this spreadsheet:

Let’s start a change and help one another!

Are people excited about this as a possibility? Would they be willing to do this? Comment on this thread!

I don’t really get how this connects with our current mentoring systems at Mozilla.

Could you elaborate a bit more the complete path people would follow to reach a mentor using this way?


Thanks for the question! There are certain mentoring programs at Mozilla on certain teams that work really well-- coding, SuMO, localization etc.
In other places, like community building or engagement, there isn’t as good of a mentorship model. We need to link people in different, creative ways, and this would be a simple, lightweight way to do so. There could be a wiki page added to the /contribute site with a collection of people across the organization who are willing to mentor, with a link to their /mentoring page. It will also help stewards identify who is available for mentorship in functional areas that don’t yet have a model. The “mentoring” tag is a start, and I will encourage more people to do that, but this will link people more cohesively.

For example: let’s say you want to get involved with Community Building and you stumble on @lshapiro’s blog and you think, “Great! I want to be mentored by this person!” providing that short site that says how to get in touch and in what ways they can help will help people reach their goals faster. Alternatively, if a steward gets a request from a potential contributor, they can access this list and connect them with the right person using their site that outlines exactly why they have connected each other. This way, a person is not receiving just an email and title, but instead a full on write up about why they’re connected.
The /mentoring model is mostly just a lightweight framework to ask people to add it to their own sites and work.

I’m going to post this as a thread on the CBT list also. :smile:

I see.

Is it really needed to create a page on each person site? I mean, probably we can just use our mozillians profiles, and write a small block about this, discoverability of personal sites is complicated and you have to maintain a separate page with the listing.

The good thing about mozillians profiles is that you can get list of people with “mentoring” and “community building” for example, and probably using its API, embed these lists into other sites.

That’s true-- I’d like to encourage people to make mentorship clearer on their personal sites because so many people read some of these sites (as we discovered during last week’s events,) and I want it also to be clear that there are a lot of people at Mozilla in different teams who are willing to mentor.

Does Mozillians have plans for a facetted search function where you can sort people by title or interest, location, and groups? Until that’s there, it’s still too hard to search to find new mentors, in my opinion…

cc/ @williamr

See also, Reps Mentorship:

The remit of Reps Mentors is narrow in the sense that their role is to guide Reps around the program. I know however that some mentors build deeper relationships with their mentees that go into other areas of Mozilla.

Hi Brian! This is awesome feedback!

@CaptainCalliope and I were talking today about maybe grabbing parts of this model across other parts of the project. I particularly like the clear guidelines of what it means to be a reps mentor. Would you mind maybe providing feedback to the CBT pathways group as a sort of mentor mentor? :smile:

I think it would be nice to “steal” (for lack of a better word) some of the aspects of the reps program in order to scale.
The first step (and I’ll put this on the company and Mozillians Yammer) is to ask if everyone could be consistent in their Mozillians profile to say that they are interested in Mentoring, not Mentorship.

CC: @lshapiro