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Women at GitLab Mentorship Program

Women at GitLab Mentorship Program

The Women at GitLab Mentorship program is a career development opportunity for participants to build trust across the organization, enable pathways for internal growth and development, and increase collaboration across teams. The program is hosted in collaboration with the Women's TMRG, GitLab Learning and Development team, and the GitLab DIB team.

History

In 2020, the Women's TMRG partnered with the Sales Organization at GitLab to offer the Women in Sales Mentorship Program pilot. This initial iteration was a huge success and inspired the scale of this iteration to include a wider audeince.

The second iteration of this program ran during July, August, and September 2021 including 32 mentor/mentee pairs with participation from 16+ departments.

Testimonials

Here what mentors and mentees at GitLab have to say about the program:

From the Mentees

This was my first mentorship experience and I'm so glad I participated. I found my self confidence in my mentor session. I lacked that for so many years and to be reminded of my self value and worth was so enriching. I would highly recommend participating!

I really enjoyed having a mentor-mentee relationship with a Director level team member who was not in my division/department. It made it easier for me to feel safe on discussing pain points and see a different perspective on the business as a whole. I really felt supported and s thought the relationship was important to us both, which was empowering.

The openness and vulnerability delivered from my mentor made me feel supported and empowered.

This mentorship program has been one of the highlights from my time at GitLab so far. My mentor is a great example of an empathetic leader who is great at strategic planning and communicating effectively. I was able to learn things during the program that I immediately applied to my work, and she inspired and motivated me in a way will persist much longer. My mentor has become one of my new role models, and I plan on keeping in touch with her far beyond this program's end.

From the Mentors

I really enjoyed being a mentor. It was helpful to establish a relationship with someone outside of my department, because it gave me an opportunity to see how other teams are working. It also encouraged me to reflect on my own career progression.

I am really proud of the supportive culture the women of GitLab have created. And this was a valuable opportunity for me to get to take part and contribute. I learned a lot from my mentee that I was able to apply back to management.

Determining your objectives out of the program is key to getting value from it. If you don't invest time in preparing you won't have any rewards to reap as a result.

One of the elements I really enjoyed about this program was the opportunity to meaningfully connect with someone outside of my team - we both learned from each other!

Program Structure

Initial program kickoff

A 25-minute discussion pannel with mentors, mentees, and company leadership. Attendance is required.

1:1 Mentor Sessions

Mentors and mentees should meet every other week for 30-minutes for a total of 5 months (with the option to extend). Sessions are led by the mentee and should be focused on specific goals. Attendance is required.

Mentor/Mentee Workbook

Async resources are available as a training guide for all mentor/mentee pairs. These resources include suggested articles to read and discuss, strategies for goal setting, sample meeting agendas, and additional training material. Use of resources is encouraged but not required.

Mentor/Mentee Training

Completion of the self-paced How to be a Good Mentor or Mentee course on LinkedIn Learning is required of all mentors and mentees. If you prefer to review text-based information, you can instead review this slides, created using content from the LinkedIn course.

End of Program Celebration

A 25-minute discussion to reflect on the experience. Attendance is optional.

Current Program Timeline

Review the progam timeline below for the next iteration of this program which will run from February through June of 2022

Date Description Related Resources
2021-09 Discuss program details with Women's TMRG group meeting  
2021-12-08 Call for Mentors Application Link
2021-12-08 Call for Mentees Application Link
2022-01-12 Applications Close  
2022-01-21 Pairing of mentor relationships complete and communicated to applicants  
2022-01-24 to 2022-02-04 Mentor/Mentee pre-program coffee chats  
2022-02-2 and 2022-02-3 Initial program Kickoff meeting Meeting Agenda
2022-06 End of program celebration Exact date TBD

Being a Mentor

As a mentor, you benefit from:

Mentor requirements

Applications will be prioritized based on:

Apply

Applications are currently closed as the 3rd program iteration is in progress through June 2022. Please complete this interest form to be notified of the next program iteration. Discover other mentorship programs for team members in the mentorship handbook.

Applying as a mentor does not guarantee you a spot in the program and eligibility will be evaluated based on criteria above.

If you've participated in a previous GitLab mentor program, you are welcome to apply again!

Being a Mentee

As a mentee, you benefit from:

Mentee requirements

Applications will be prioritized on many points including:

Apply

Applications are currently closed as the 3rd program iteration is in progress through June 2022. Please complete this interest form to be notified of the next program iteration. Discover other mentorship programs for team members in the mentorship handbook.

Applying as a mentee does not guarentee you a spot in the program, and eligibility will be evaluated based on criteria above.

If you've participated in a previous GitLab mentor program, you are welcome to apply again!

Metrics and Outcomes

Mentors and mentees will complete a pre-program and end of program survey to collect feedback, assess skills, and determine if goals set during mentor/mentee relationships have been set.

Success of this program will be measured by:

  1. percentage of mentor/mentee pairs who meet consistently on a bi-weekly basis, with a goal of 95% completion
  2. attendance to live training sessions, with a goal of 95% attendance
  3. quality of feedback of the program from both the mentor and mentee perspective
  4. percentage of mentee goal achieved during mentorship, as reported by mentees with a goal of at least 50% of goal achieved
  5. mentor and mentee career development at GitLab after program conclusion including rates of promotion, transfer, and retention

FAQ

Can I participate as both a mentor and a mentee?

Yes, this is a possibility. It's important that team members talk with their managers to discuss their capacity to participate in both roles in this program. Participation in both roles will require a 2hr commitment per month (two 30 minute sessions as a mentor and two 30 minute sessions as a mentee).

It's possible that we will have a shortage of mentors and be unable to complete all mentor/mentee pairs. If there is a shortage of mentors and you've applied as both a mentor and a mentee, you will be assigned only as a mentor in this program.

I participated in a past mentorship program at GitLab. Can I still participate in the current iteration?

Yes! Past participants in any mentor program and as either mentees, mentors, or both, are encouraged to apply to participate again.

I'd like to participate but I can't commit the entire length of the program. Can I still apply?

If you cannot commit to the 3 month program, please consider applying for a future mentorship program at GitLab. It's important that both mentors and mentees are available for the full 3 month program to achieve the best results.

I'm not eligible to be a mentor or a mentee in this program. What are my options for future participation?

The L&D team is implementing a company-wide mentor program in FY23 Q1. Please watch for updates on this iteration.

Team members are always encouraged to build mentor/mentee relationships independently. You can find resources and a list of available mentors in the Learning and Development handbook

Additional questions?

Questions, comments, and feedback can be posted in the #women slack channel.

2021 Program Results

Participation

  1. Total Participants: 66 team members / 33 mentor/mentee pairs
  2. Unique Departments Represented by Mentees: 19
  3. Unique Departments Represented by Mentors: 18

Event Attendance

Event Name Total Attendance Percentage Attendance Session 1/Session 2/Session 3
Program Kickoff 95.31% 7 / 12 / 42
Mid-Program Event 4.5% 0 / 0 / 3
End of Program Event 27% 4 / 6 / 8

Kick-off session recordings:

Session 3:

Watch session 1and session 2 on the GitLab Unfiltered YouTube channel.

Post-Program Survey

Skill development was a key variable used to measure success of this program.

Top 5 skills developed by Mentors

Top 5 skills developed by Mentees

Other metrics

Pre-Program Survey

Mentors

What skills do you hope this program will help you develop and/or strengthen?

mentor skill data from pre survey

Mentees

What skills do you hope this program will help you develop and/or strengthen?

mentee skill data from pre survey
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