Recap of the Contributor Working Group’s Mentorship Chat on May 18, 2023

In attendance: @adityakane @oglekler @yoga1103  @kirasong @st810amaze @onealtr @tobifjellner @javiercasares @courane01 @sereedmedia @juliarosia @annekatzeff @nomadskateboarding  @harishanker@@unintended8 @sandesh055 @askdesign @jominney @leonnugraha @tacoverdo @patricia70 @webtechpooja @francina @Rico F. Lüthi @tobifjellner

Notes: @harishanker


Meeting Start



Mentorship Program Pilot 

Based on discussions from past chats, the working group identified a pilot program for our projectwide mentorship, which was recently shared in public in the Make/Project Blog.
The flowchart below explains a draft of the program plan: 

A flowchart depicting the program flow of the WordPress contributor mentorship program. Mentees are connected to a mentor, join a cohort of mentors and mentees, complete self directed courses, learn-ups, selects Make/Team, makes contributions, optionally creates a three month plan, and graduates. If not, they drop out.

Key additions made to the MVPMinimum Viable Product "A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development." - WikiPedia based on past chats: 

  • Mentees will have to make a chosen set of initial contributions for their chosen Make/Team in order to complete the mentorship.
  • For the pilot, Make/Teams can opt-in whether they would like to participate in the pilot program. Interested Make/Teams can nominate mentorsEvent Supporter Event Supporter (formerly Mentor) is someone who has already organised a WordCamp and has time to meet with their assigned mentee every 2 weeks, they talk over where they should be in their timeline, help them to identify their issues, and also identify solutions for their issues. who can support mentees and eventually onboard them as contributors to their respective teams.
  • The length of the program has been finalized as one month or four weeks to incorporate contributions. 

Working group members were generally in agreement with the MVP and it was decided to move forward with the same. Group members area already sharing feedback in the white paper separately too. 

Language as a barrier for entry was shared, and the importance of making the program multilingual. A couple of ideas were suggested to mitigate this:

Implementation and Identifying Tasks and Next Steps

Implementation timeline

Our group identified the need to do at least one pilot cohort in 2023, to be in line with our project goals. We discussed a timeline to plan our cohort while being mindful of the time and availability of our group members too. We identified that WCEUWCEU WordCamp Europe. The European flagship WordCamp event., the community summit, WCUSWCUS WordCamp US. The US flagship WordCamp event., along with WordPress 6.3 and 6.4 dates will affect the timelines of our pilot, which will run for four weeks or one month. 

Some ideas that were shared include:

  • After WordCampWordCamp WordCamps are casual, locally-organized conferences covering everything related to WordPress. They're one of the places where the WordPress community comes together to teach one another what they’ve learned throughout the year and share the joy. Learn more. Europe and before WordCamp US.
  • Either starting asap (after WCEU) or later (after WCUS) was also suggested.
  • It was shared that summer vacation in Europe between July and August might be a blocker due to the general unavailability of various mentors. 
  • Group members suggested using in-person time at WordCamp Europe to work on the mentorship program
  • There was broad consensus around using WordCamp Europe as a way to do promotions for the mentorship program and do a cohort right after the same (but before WCUS). 
  • Another suggested idea was to do outreach during WCEU and WCUS, and plan the first cohort around September/October 2023. 
  • The group will brainstorm on this further and share a timeline shortly.

Project Management Tool

The group unanimously agreed to use GitHubGitHub GitHub is a website that offers online implementation of git repositories that can easily be shared, copied and modified by other developers. Public repositories are free to host, private repositories require a paid subscription. GitHub introduced the concept of the ‘pull request’ where code changes done in branches by contributors can be reviewed and discussed before being merged be the repository owner. projects as a project management tool for the program! Some group members also offered to set it up – we will work on this asynchronously. 

Task List

Based on our MVP, we identified a list of tasks that need to be completed before the program

  • Identifying and recruiting Make/Teams
  • Identifying Mentors
  • Publish call for mentees 
  • Identifying mentees for the cohort based on the selected pool
  • Auditing learning materials on Learn WordPress (existing contributor training courses) for mentees
  • Creating and publishing the pre-event and post event surveys for mentees and mentors
  • Running online workshops on different contribution topics (example topics: Active Listening, Better communication, Active contributor guidance situations, Diversity and Inclusion, Leadership basics, Conflict resolution in WordPress, How decisions are made in WordPress, Introduction to different Make/teams)
  • Facilitating the program
  • Mentoring contributors 
  • Make/Team representatives to onboard contributors to their teams.
  • Ongoing promotion as well as Marcomms for the program

Group members were generally in agreement with the task list with many members expressing interest in taking on multiple tasks. The group identified the need for strategic collaboration with the Community Team (for facilitating the program), Training Team (for auditing Learn courses and holding online workshops) and Marketing Team (for ongoing promotions and Marcomms of this program). 

High Priority Tasks / Next Steps /Action Items!

  • Get buy-in from Make/Teams for our pilot:
    Since our program now involves mentees making initial contributions, support from Make/Teams is definitely needed. Group members recommended the following teams to join the mentorship program:
    • CoreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress.
    • Photos 
    • Polyglots
    • Docs
    • Training

Additionally, as mentioned earlier, Community, Training, and Marketing Teams have offered strategic support for this program too! 

  • Publish a call for mentees:
    We have also agreed to publish our call for mentees before the next meeting. The Marketing Team has offered to support with this. 
  • Create a GitHub Project Board
    We need to create a GitHub project board for project management, so that our group can focus on the next steps, and start working on launching the pilot. 

WordCamp Europe 2023 Meeting

Many group members are attending WordCamp Europe 2023, and we have agreed to do a working session alongside the event. More details about the same will be shared soon. 

#contributor-working-group #mentorship-program #wpcontributors #meeting-notes

#mentorship-chat, #mentorship-chat-recap