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Mentoring Candidate LeSS Trainers

Purpose of mentoring

Candidate LeSS Trainers will be given a mentor to guide them through their current LeSS adoption and through the last steps to become a LeSS Trainer. The purpose of mentoring is learning for both the mentor and the mentee. It will require patience as it will take time, there is no fixed process or time for mentoring.

Key points to remember related to mentoring:

  • The objective of mentoring is learning!
  • The learning is both ways. The mentor will learn about the mentee and the other way around.
  • Mentoring takes as long as it takes. Do not treat it as a checkbox activity that you need to get through. It will not be constructive towards the mentoring process.

Aspects of mentoring

A LeSS trainer will focus on particular aspects during the mentoring, specifically:

  • Personal growth for the mentee… but also for the mentor.
  • On-going LeSS adoptions or coaching work
  • Reviewing, feedback, and discussions related to the case study.
  • Reviewing, feedback, and discussions related to mentees planned course (such as agenda, teaching material, etc).

What to expect?

There is no fixed “mentoring process” and instead it will be personal between the mentor and the mentee. Some practices that have been used:

  • Start with a discussion about how you are going to work together.
  • Agree that either can stop the mentoring relationship without holding any grudges.
  • Get to know each other personally. Preferably meet up face-to-face. Preferably regularly.
  • The mentor ought to be engaged early in the case study writing.
  • The mentor and mentee together ought to check whether the case study is relevant enough for a good LeSS case (minimum criteria)
  • Join the course of the mentor or co-train a course. This causes more interest which leads to more LeSS adoptions and better case studies.
  • The mentor could recommend studying some of the already published case studies.
  • Invite the mentor to join the LeSS adoption as observer or coach.

Process Suggestions

  • Have discussions regularly. At least monthly for 2 hours.
  • As mentee, regularly ask advice from mentor. E.g. share facilitations guides.
  • As mentor, ask mentee to make system models of different scenarios. Discuss them together.
  • As mentee, you must be able to share openly with your mentor related to your case study and/or your current LeSS adoption. Not sharing openly will make mentoring impossible.
  • Take one of the LeSS books and select a page at randomly. Share experience related to that.
  • Encourage the mentee to write blog posts about the learning.
  • Co-train a course after the mentee becomes a trainer.
  • Have discussions about the case study before writing the first version.
  • Try to discover a theme or focus of the case study.
  • Set expectations for the final review of the case study (with Craig) that it is also a 2-way learning.
  • As mentor, also follow the edits with Craig and join some of the discussions

Quick tips for mentors

  • Avoid large timezone differences between mentor and mentee.
  • When it isn’t working, raise that to find a different mentee.

Where do I find my mentor

If you know a current LeSS Trainer who wants to be your mentor, ask them. If not, then you probably want to drop a mail to Bas.