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Discussion on: Onboarding a junior developer to your team? Here's 12 tips.

pchinery profile image

Thank you very much for this write-up. Most of the points are things we are practicing in our company already, some of them by explicit decision, some more established by common sense. Seeing this written down helps reflecting on the things we do and why we do them.

There is one thing I'd like to warn about though and that are a bit of a conflict in your points:

Always be available for questions <-> Respect their time

I'm sure it was not your intention to put it that way, but saying that you always have to be available and stop whatever you are doing when the junior has a question puts a lot of mental stress on the mentor. Interrupting tasks all the time is very exhausting and should be avoided.

So, being respectful with each others time goes both ways in my opinion. Of course, a mentor should dedicate a lot of time to the junior to be available to answer questions. I always like to split this between urgent matters and more general matters. I will interrupt my work for urgent matters when the junior approaches me with a question. But for things that are not urgent, I usually reserve a spot when we go through a number of questions that have arisen over the day or half a day.

This allows me to be fully dedicated to the questions and also fully dedicate myself to other work (often requests from other colleagues).

carolstran profile image
Carolyn Stransky Author

I do agree... except at the very beginning of the onboarding process. When the junior first arrives to the team, they should be the top priority (unless something is literally on fire). Then once they are more settled, I think working out a schedule like you mentioned sounds nice!