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From <>
Subject RE: The role of a mentor
Date Tue, 10 Apr 2018 16:37:15 GMT
Sorry, the below should say "very occasionally (in an ideal world) they need to say something"
(thanks for the private ping on this mistake)

-----Original Message-----
From: <> 
Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2018 9:36 AM
To: '' <>
Subject: RE: The role of a mentor


I've not been very active in the incubator for some time. I've participated in these "role
of the mentor" conversations many times over the years. I wish I'd been able to make my contribution
as clear and accurate as Julian's contribution below... (applause)

A good mentor *looks* like they are doing nothing, but in fact they are reading every thread,
watching every process being developed, thinking through every decision. Very occasionally
(in an ideal world) they are saying nothing.

When they do choose to speak it's because something is happening that is in conflict with
"the Apache Way". The goal is not to teach the community specific and rigid processes, the
goal is to teach the community how to use the Apache Way to create communities that create
software. The precise processes will evolve over time in a way that suits the project community.

In most cases, as the podling community matures the mentor will start to learn improvements
to their own processes. This has certainly been true in every single project I've mentored
over the years and why I occasionally come back and mentor a new project. It's a learning
experience, it is NOT a teaching experience.


-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Jagielski <>
Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2018 7:32 AM
To: general <>
Subject: Re: The role of a mentor


> On Apr 9, 2018, at 12:45 PM, Julian Hyde <> wrote:
> Has anyone here taught someone how to fish? (Or how to make cookies, 
> or ski?)
> Mostly you just stand off, watching what they do. If you see them 
> about to screw up in a big way, step in. Occasionally, offer them 
> hints for how they might do what they’re doing a little bit better.
> (Not too often, because they’ll start to resent the advice.)
> It’s a time-intensive process, and most of the time the person being taught thinks
you’re doing nothing.
> Sometimes they ask for help, and very occasionally they ask for guidance (but only if
you have not given them more unsolicited advice than they think they need, see above).
> Julian
>> On Apr 9, 2018, at 5:52 AM, Liang Chen < <>>
>> Hi
>> +1, agree with JB points.
>> Mentor mostly just focus on ASF policy and rules, then is ok. 
>> "Teach him how to fish", it is more important, so it would be better 
>> if mentors could provide some good example cases(role model) for them 
>> to learn, tell them how to find the solution from ASF website.
>> Regards
>> Liang
>> Jean-Baptiste Onofré wrote
>>> Hi John,
>>> IMHO, a mentor is not necessary involved in the project 
>>> technics/codebase (it's actually a bonus).
>>> As a mentor, I'm focusing:
>>> 1. Insure of the legal aspect of the project (ICLA/CCLA, SGA, ...) 
>>> 2. Help around infra and release preparation according to Apache 
>>> rules 3. Help to promote the project and build communities around 4.
>>> See if there's potential interaction with other podlings and 
>>> existing TLPs 5. Help to go to graduation (following the graduation
>>> checklist) 6. (optional) Help on the contribution (codebase, 
>>> website, ...)
>>> My $0.01
>>> Regards
>>> JB
>>> On 04/03/2018 12:54 AM, John D. Ament wrote:
>>>> I've been following along the absent mentors discussion.  But I'm 
>>>> curious, from both an IPMC member's perspective as well as a member 
>>>> of a podling, what roles do you see for a mentor?  What are their 
>>>> responsibilities to the podling?
>>>> We have a few things written down, and I'm not too interested in 
>>>> rehashing the written version.  But what do podlings need from 
>>>> their mentors?
>>>> Point
>>>> you in a direction to run with?  Do the apache work for the 
>>>> podling?  Do we (the ASF) need mentors to ensure that podlings are 
>>>> operating within certain bounds?  Do we rely on mentors to be a 
>>>> read of the pulse of a podling?
>>>> John
>>> --
>>> Jean-Baptiste Onofré
>>> jbonofre@
>>> Talend -
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