Mentorship, I love it!
Start writing here...Recently I have read a book titled Software Craftsmanship: The new Imperative by author Pete Mcbreen and I must say it just open my mind up to so much more and made me reflect on my journey I have been going on as an individual. The book primarily looks at the Software “Engineering” metaphor and the compares it to a more relative to my opinion, Software Craftsmanship metaphor.
View the manifesto here: http://manifesto.softwarecraftsmanship.org/
The parts that I most valued though were around the learning and continuous improvement that one has to do and be passionate about in the software space. We have to continually learn , share and teach each other hence forging a model of mentorship along the way into our culture. This made me think about how absolutely lucky I have been to have gotten this from a fairly good point in my career and recently I have enjoyed sharing my learnings with as much of those whom I have the opportunity to share it with.
This model of mentorship I believe gives us so much more as people in comparison to the standard academic system which in most cases really just proves many people have the ability to take a test. I have found from my own experiences mentorship from a master whom is passionate about sharing and enriching there students lives through practical and real world scenarios tend to have a more rewarding pay off.
This pay off I speak of is not one which can be quantified by the amount of money you earn, Its a feeing of pride, accomplishment and trust. For me knowing that someone who has entrusted and shared all their lives learning with me has given me a sense of purpose on a personal level reminding me that I now have to use all that knowledge to not only improve upon but also share it with future generations to come.
Today in particular I enjoyed doing exactly this, sharing knowledge! We have a developer from another team who is doing a bit of team tourism with us for the next 3 months, this basically means she is now apart of our team and wants to learn and experience other environments without jeopardizing her job but still allowing her to learn more (I love this). But back to why I enjoyed today and got motivated for this post, I got to be a bit of a mentor and we got to learn together .
We had a chat first about TDD and she mentioned that she doesn’t do it and her original team doesn’t really write tests but she would like to understand more, so toward the end of the day we found some time and we paired on a kata and worked through all we could.
Heres what I loved and learned:
Teaching made me question my understanding of what we were doing (this is a good thing)
Even though we never knew each other very well, while pairing on the problem so many ideas and approaches were shared. It was great for collaboration.
The conversation grew past TDD and into other aspects of soft skills developers should have. We spoke about being people and not resources. 🙂
A simple offer to spend time with someone and try with them gives a lot of confidence to the individual and makes them feel safe.
At the end of the session we both felt like we had accomplished and learned something new.
People get intimidated then excited by the VIM extension in the IDE lol
I know this was a long post but just felt the need to express how awesome it felt sharing knowledge today. I hope that this Knowledge sharing Craftsmanship Mentor Culture can be adapted in more places of work.