You spend a lot of time mentoring other women engineers here at Salesforce. What guidance do you offer them?
When I sit down with a mentee, I ask them to articulate their activities so they can be properly rewarded for them. I ask about their technical achievements and also about their day to day. We will go through their Slack history and determine how they spend their time. That helps us construct a narrative of their contributions, which they can use to inform their progression when it comes to promotion time.
Together we map how they spend their time to Salesforce’s values and expectations for their current level and for a future level. And much of the time, the path they choose depends on if they want to be an independent contributor or if they want to be an engineering manager.
How do you find your mentees? What does an initial conversation with a mentee look like?
Their managers usually come to me. For example, a director or a VP will reach out and say, "Hey, I have a woman engineer here who is really great and I think she could benefit from your mentorship."
When I first connect with the mentee, she explains her goals and maybe even frustrations, and I coach her through it, letting her know that I relate and that I have been where she is, and then give her some tailored advice. There are also times where I do not relate, because I have not been there. But that is ok because what people need is somebody to hear them out and help them. I think people need to establish a narrative for their own work so they can chart a fulfilling career path.