Mentoring/Formal/USA/Additional info

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< Mentoring‎ | Formal‎ | USA

This page contains additional information surrounding the Formal Mentoring program in the USA. It not mandatory reading or official policy, but it is useful and interesting information.


This set of guidelines is the basic core element of the Waze Formal Mentoring effort in the USA. It was created by researching a number of existing mentoring programs from industry, personal experience of the primary author in conducting mentoring within the workplace, and adapted with knowledge of the Waze Community and their objectives. The word "Formal" was added to create "Formal Mentoring" only as a way to distinguish this effort from the broad set of mentoring important efforts, of one Wazer helping another, that go on within the Waze community every day. That "Informal Mentoring" is essential to the Waze community, but is different than Formal Mentoring.

This core set of guidelines can be applied independently of any process or management structure that creates a Formal Mentoring Program. Therefore it can be used by individuals wanting a more formal agreement to mentoring. It can also be applied to create a mentoring program in another region or country.

What to talk about during your first session and beyond

You may want to venture beyond the strict confines of Waze editing, beyond technical engagement with your Mentor-Mentee relationship, in your conversations from time to time. This helps foster a friendly and less rigid environment, and builds a personal relationship with trust between the participants. Some ideas to consider discussing include:

  • Topics, and experiences that surround your involvement in Waze.
  • If you're comfortable, you can discuss your life and occupation outside of editing.
  • Both your backgrounds and interests surrounding your involvement in Waze
  • Mentoring expectations for both
  • Time commitment during mentoring and how long it will last

Do's and don'ts to enhance the mentoring relationship

Mentee Dos Mentor Dos
  • Own and drive the relationship. It is up to you, not the Mentor.
  • Active listening and be receptive to ideas. (Mentee should look up Active Listening and become familiar with the technique.)
  • Be understanding.
  • Share experiences, strengths, weaknesses and how you’d like to improve.
  • Actively listen to the Mentees objectives and questions. (Mentor should look up *Active Listening and become familiar with the technique.)
  • Be understanding
  • Provide support and encouragement.
  • Help the Mentee succeed at Waze efforts.
  • Challenge the Mentee to grow through other involvement in the Waze community.
  • Assess whether the skill-building activity requires a temporary increase n mentee rank, and whether the Mentee is ready for such an increase, even temporarily. You may need to assess current skills at the beginning of the mentorship for a week or so to make this decision. Remember, you are responsible for any changes the Mentee makes at the increased rank! For this reason, you may want to ask the Mentee to only do edits under your supervision.
Dos for Both Mentee and Mentor
  • Be respectful and act with integrity.
  • Ask for honest constructive feedback.
  • Provide honest, constructive, feedback
  • Allow issues in the relationship to go addressed; find a third party to guide you on whether to continue and how to continue, if you think there is something wrong that you are not sure about or feel uncomfortable bringing up with your partner.

Mentee Don'ts Mentor Don'ts
  • No-show at your live mentoring sessions or cancel at the last minute.
  • Arrive at your engagement unprepared.
  • Expect instant answers from PMs or email.
  • Ask questions that are too personal.
  • Ask personal favors from your Mentor to promote you in the Waze community.
  • No-show at your live mentoring sessions or cancel at the last minute.
  • Be unresponsive to PMs or email.
  • Chide or talk down to your Mentee.
  • Evaluate Mentee performance or skill
  • Wait for a long time to hear back from your Mentee – If they do not take charge of communication, prompt them to engage.
Don'ts Both Mentee and Mentor
  • DON’T make unreasonable demands (err on the side of caution).
  • DON’T ignore feedback.
  • DON’T abandon or sabotage the relationship if it goes awry; find a way to end it gracefully and with ongoing respect.
  • DON’T allow the mentorship to continue indefinitely. End and claim success for what you've achieved, then start a new arrangement.

Alternate communication options

Some alternate methods of communication may be offered by specific mentors, if you feel any of these would work better for you, feel free to ask. We will try to accommodate;

  • Private Messages (PMs)
  • Personal Email
  • Forum topic dialogue
  • Live chat (e.g., Google Hangouts, IM, WME Chat, etc.)
  • Video chat (e.g., Google Hangouts, Skype, etc.)
  • Screen sharing, and remote desktop (e.g., Google Hangouts, Chrome Remote Desktop, etc.)
  • Telephone conversations
  • Text messages
  • In-person meetings

For some more communication tools listed with their pros and cons, see the WME Chat page.

Ending a formal mentorship

It is always a good idea to specifically communicate that your mentoring relationship is over, so that both of your expectations are clear. This does not prevent future interactions or even another Formal Mentoring arrangement between you.

Either party of the Mentoring relationship can suggest to the other when they no longer are able, or need to continue the arrangement. Primarily this will be because the agreed upon goals have been achieved. This may also be due to other reasons (e.g. other events in real life, lack of time, your skills levels and needs are no longer the best match, etc.).

When you've reached the end of your Mentoring please let the Mentor clearly know that you want to end the arrangement, and why. Ask the mentor about any rank or role modifications (not all promotions are permanent), and discuss the extent of future interaction with each other.

You may consider discussing what you've learned from each other, and the next steps to take on your quest be a better editor.

Mentoring wiki outline [edit]

This is a list of all the pages which make up the Mentoring program. If new pages are created, they should be added to this list by clicking here.

You can click to go to any page in the Mentoring suite. Please click on your country's name for information specific to you.