As discussed in GitLab’s Remote Playbook, the intentionality behind communication, especially in remote settings, is a critical element of success. This pilot program aims to support GitLab’s communications plan by purposefully creating and cultivating opportunities for mentors, mentees, and connection.
The goal of the Women in Sales Pilot Program is to provide mentorship opportunities to women in Sales as a pilot. If successful, we will consider an expansion to other groups across the company. In the spirit of iteration, we would like to get started soon and expand and improve as we go.
The program proposes a mentor/mentee relationship between selected applicants on the sales team and mentors in leadership roles across the company. Sessions will take place every other week for 30-minutes and will last for up to 3 months (with the possibility of an extension), as long as both mentors and mentees remain engaged. The mentor/mentee relationship will be cross-divisional, meaning that both parties will have the opportunity to work with and learn from team members outside of your respective divisions.
Every 3 weeks a panelist of mentors will host a
Coaching Panel to discuss several topics mentees indicated to be of interest as a group. There will be pre-work for mentees prior to Coaching Panels (I.E. reading an article, an expert of the first chapter of a book, etc.) to help simulate discussion and basic understanding of the topic to be discussed. We will share material to review at least one week prior to the sessions.
Coaching panels will be held over Zoom with Q&A on the identified topic. They will be moderated by the program managers. As Coaching Panels are an extension of mentorship sessions with the wider pilot group, they will not be livestreamed.
Potential Coaching Panel topics include:
|Effective Mentor/Mentee Partnerships||Mentee expectations, How mentors can help drive a productive career conversation, identification and selection of a personal development goal||All Mentors||2020/07/08|
|Leadership @ all levels in Sales||Goal setting, accountability, influence and collaboration||David Sakamoto, Craig Mestel, Michelle Hodges and Mark Rogge||2020/08/24|
|Career Transitions||Transitioning into a manager role; leadership pipeline; career inflection points||Eric Brinkman, Mike Pyle, Robin Schulman and Ryan O'Nell||TBD|
|Crucial Conversations||Identifying key conversation moments and how to have those conversations successfully||Michael McBride, Bryan Wise and Danielle Morrill||2020/07/27|
|Work/Life Integration||Balancing family, friends, and careers in leadership||Kristen Lawrence, Dale Brown, Carol Teskey and Brandon Jung||TBD|
All program communications will be sent through the slack channel #women-in-sales-mentorship-pilot including any pre reading before coaching panels.
We will continue iterating on the pilot as we go, but the initial structure will be:
|Application Process for Mentors and Mentees||May 7 - May 21, 2020|
|Selection and program topic identification*||May 22 - 28, 2020|
|Mentor Program Kick-Off Meeting to review: expectation setting, mentor/mentee roles, program structure details, etc.||June 10, 2020|
|Continued mentorship and implementation of concepts discussed in day-to-day||mid June - mid September 2020|
|Feedback survey at the midpoint of the pilot program||end July 2020|
|Feedback survey at the end of the pilot program||end September 2020|
The program will last for up to 3-months if both the mentor and the mentee remain engaged. Being engaged in the program will be defined as:
|Michael McBride CRO||Helen Mason Area Sales Manager, SMB|
|Robin Schulman CLO||Madeline Hennessy Area Sales Manager, SMB|
|Brandon Jung VP, Alliances||Allison Mueller Strategic Account Leader|
|Mike Pyle VP, Enterprise||Alyssa Belardi Account Executive - Mid Market|
|Carol Teskey Sr. Director, People Success||Christine Yoshida Manager, Professional Services Practice|
|Danielle Morrill Head of Corporate Marketing||Tanuja Paruchuri Senior Program Manager, Sales Enablement|
|Mark Rogge Director, Regional Sales||Taylor Medlin Solutions Architect|
|Dale Richard Brown Principal Accounting Officer||Amy Brandenburg Technology Partner Manager|
|Michelle Hodges VP of Global Channels||Susannah Reed Strategic Account Leader|
|Bryan Wise VP, IT||Sophie Pouliquen Senior Technical Account Manager|
|Eric Brinkman Senior Director, Product Management||Jenna McCarthy Technical Account Manager|
|Kristen Lawrence Director, Customer Success||Chloe Whitestone Technical Account Manager|
|Craig Mestel VP, Finance||Kyla Gradin Account Executive - Mid Market|
|David Sakamoto VP, Customer Success||Annette Kristensen Strategic Account Leader|
|Ryan O'Nell VP, Commercial Sales||Katherine Evans Strategic Account Leader|
|Ryan O'Nell VP, Commercial Sales||Anja Loether Strategic Account Leader|
Applications will be prioritized on a few different factors including:
If you meet the eligibility criteria and are interested in applying, please fill out the Mentee Google Form application! Applications are due by May 21st!
You are eligible to apply for the program if you meet the requirements below:
If you meet the eligibility criteria and are interested in applying, please fill out the Mentor Google Form application! Applications are due by May 21st!
While each participant will set the priorities for their mentor discussions, we are intentional with this cohort as we encourage discussions to include challenges, opportunities and issues unique to women in sales. We aim to keep removing barriers to those discussions and ensure transparent engagement across GitLab.
A. We needed to chose a place to start to validate that a mentorship model/framework would deliver the intended value to the mentees and mentors. When we looked at the data, women in Sales represented one of the lowest percentages in management and leadership when compared to the other functional areas. Additionally, Women in Sales were vocal about seeking out this opportunity. If this pilot is successful, we hope to expand for our second iteration.
Interested in what other mentorship opportunities exist at GitLab? Check out the Minorities in Tech pilot program!
The Reverse AMA format - Questions asked by a facilitator (typically a member of the leadership team), answered by the group.
In Sales, we piloted this format with our Black team members. We wanted to start with this underrepresented group to acknowledge that our Black team members may be processing a lot of emotions in different ways as a result of domestic and global events. Our values promote being inclusive and being an ally, and we need to lean into these values.