I recently read Running an effective mobile team, part 1. It was wicked good so I poked around the blog where I read it, “Accidentally in Code: engineering an interesting life.” There, I noticed the author, Cate, also facilitates a slack for Engineering Managers. I sent Cate a message and asked for an invite. Before long we were messaging back and forth.
During our exchange Cate asked me a few questions and in the end helped me to better define my role at work, pointing out that I wasn’ an engineering manager, but rather pretty squarely in the category of product manager. PROFESSIONAL DEFINITION!
It was awesome.
Cate was a micro mentor!
Thanks Cate! 🙌
I’ve noticed that “mentorship” is a term that gets thrown around a lot in weby techy circles. While I’m no expert, I feel that my time as a “summer camp professional” provided me with insight into mentorship.
Being a mentor doesn’t need to be a gigantic life-long commitment. It can be a 10 minute exchange online. Quick. Passing. Camp counselor our mentors, but not in any overly-wrought sort of way. They’re high school and college aged folks for the most part who are in the right place at the right time to listen to younger folks.
A mentor listens and shares. A mentor needn’t be the Qui-Gon to your Obi-Wan (this is to say making a life-long commitment to you, granted, Qui-Gon does do a bit of post-life mentoring for Obi-Wan, too, so this was a terrible example, BUUUUT I digress). This post is my benumbed way of saying that mentorship can be done on the daily. I think it is about taking the time to listen every now and again, breakthrough the anomie and have a moment of connection.
Micro mentor, like a personal pizza that gets shared. Bagel bites.