Contributors asked for more mentoring and guidance during the first weeks of work, so the Buddy Program was born!
If you'd like to volunteer as a buddy, please sign up by clicking here.
As a newbie, it's not always easy to find a tenured pro to walk you though all things Status. You'll be matched with a buddy who'll set up weekly chats during your first 6-8 weeks. Your buddy will reach out to you sometime in your first week. There’s nothing for you to prepare or do in advance of the weekly buddy calls:
- Your buddy will be ready to guide you on contributing to Status
- The buddy chats are a safe space for you to ask whatever you’d like about working at Status - no topic too trivial or complex!
- Feel free to make a note of as many questions as you like - you can ask these to your buddy either in your weekly chats, or any time via Slack
Offsites are an amazing way to get to know people, so let's try to give the same vibe to the ones who haven’t attended yet! We'll be choosing buddies to pair with newbies based on signups via the #newbies Slack channel, and via the above form.
It depends on you and the person you will be buddying, but we expect it to be about 1 hour each week, for the first 6-8 weeks.
What makes a good buddy?
A good buddy is someone who is prepared to be a friendly support and an informal source of information on the team and how the company works, and someone who is prepared to share their experience. There's no set amount of time you should have worked with Status before becoming a buddy - everyone is very welcome to volunteer.
Personal attributes of a good buddy include:
- The ability to listen
- Openness and commitment to being a buddy – it can be a learning experience for both parties
- Good time management and self management skills
- Relevant knowledge and experience to be able to provide the right level of support
- Ability to identify learning opportunities
- Ability to use questions to encourage new starters to think for themselves
Roles and responsibilities of a buddy
- As a buddy you are not ‘managing’ that individual but are there in the role of supportive colleague and friendly face
- Helping your new colleague to navigate their way around Status
- Answering questions – often more than once. Buddies need to be patient as new starters take in a lot of information, often in a short time, and may need to re-ask questions in the future as events occur
- Provide information, signpost information and provide informal support
- Introducing them to other contributors who are important to their role
- Helping them to understand the formal and informal culture and structures at Status
- Getting the newbie comfortable with Status products and principles
- Encourage them to ask questions if unsure about any aspects of their role
- Arrange to meet up for coworking if in the area so they can enjoy the social side of working and feel part of the team, or introduce them to any other Status team members in their area
- Flag to People Ops topics or situations that seem to be confusing for new hires, so we can tackle them better and faster!
- Share reflections of your time as a buddy in the #newbies channel to help others learn from your experience.
Guidelines for approaching the first meeting
If you have not done this role before it can seem daunting; this is matched by the new starter feeling a bit overwhelmed possibly by a new role and new environment.
The following checklist will help establish your relationship and decide on how you are both going to make use of the time spent together. It includes some topics for you to cover over the course of your chats.
- Schedule a weekly chat every week during their first 6-8 weeks
- Outline your role, experience at Status, what you're working on and how that ties in with the organization
- Explain to them what the buddy program is, and your role as their buddy, and the type of topics you’ll be covering in the weekly chats
- Walk through Status and send each other messages and ETH/SNT
- Find out about their professional background and experience and what they will be working on/they're excited about
- Ask about their experience/comfort level with remote work, decentralised autonomous organisations, open source, and community-based working
- Talk about Status’s mission and objectives - the State of Us, decentralisation, the Principles, etc.
- Discuss the working culture at Status. How is this different to other places the newbie has contributed?
- Arrange to introduce them to key people relevant to their role
- Suggest what to read and other resources that are useful for their role or for getting to know the company in general
- Ask them if they're confused about anything and help them figure out the answers they need. If you don't know the answers to some of their questions it's okay - just point them to someone who does, or ping #peopleops so we can look up a solution together
- Explain basics like how to use Slack, how to contact people, how Swarms work
- Share some Slack channels that they may find interesting to follow
- Get to know a bit about them as a person outside of work
- Talk about how to dogfood the app, give examples for how they can use the app, where to report issues, nightly builds, etc
- Ask about their workstation - do they have a comfortable space to work? Are they aware of our coworking allowance?
Make sure they know they can ask you anything in regards to work and you will be happy to help – it is important to stress this as often new members of the team can be reluctant to ask.
How buddies are matched
The buddy system is role- and location- agnostic. This means that we don't match up a buddy with a newbie that has a similar role, or lives in a similar location. Though having this overlap might facilitate an easier buddying relationship, we want folks across the organisation to have the chance to meet and get to know others outside of those they'd regularly work with.
This means you may get paired with a buddy/newbie that has a completely different role to you. The buddying conversations don't need to be technical in nature. There's no expectation that you will talk about the day-to-day work responsibilities (the newbie should have a team who will get them set up with a project in their first weeks). The buddying program is focused on the broader community, ecosystem, working culture, vision, and mission.
If a newbie still has lots of questions on their working responsibilities/role, feel free to reach out to someone in People Ops so they can make sure they get the answers they need.
The location-agnostic pairings may mean that it's challenging to find a timezone overlap between both buddy and newbie. If a pairing becomes unmanageable due to timezone difference, please let #peopleops know and they'll reassign a new buddy in a closer region.