Mentor Assignments, Guidelines, and Information

Greetings, Mentors!

This thread will serve as an overall guide to assist you in your work to mentor the new players in the community. Below are the current mentors, their mentees, and other useful information. Mentors should provide me or the PM with updates so that we can keep this table up to date.

Mentors will have been integrated into the region themselves and should possess a foundation of understanding of TSP’s history and culture and/or experience within the regional interworkings. If you are not a mentor and would like to become one, please message me.

Mentor (Forum Name) Current Mentee Status Current Office(s) Specialty/Interest(s) Platform of Choice
ProfessorHenn* Jack_isperson First Contact PM
Pronoun* X X Justice & General Assembly, SPSF, Tech-stuff
Anjo* AT_Walker First Contact CRS
Maluhia* Flaver Training N/A
Cryo* Welly Training N/A
Concrete Slab* X Unassigned RMB Mod
Penguin* Greater Lamero First Contact
Vietnam* X X MoI Tech-stuff
Griffindor* Classyjazzy Training Delegate & Justice High Court stuff, Assembly Forum or Discord
Purple Hyacinth* ABC First Contact N/A
HumanSanity* Marainta First Contact CRS & General
Kris Kringle* X Unassigned Chief Justice Historical research, spreadsheets

(*)Indicates that the Mentor was part of the initial, pre-launch, group.

On Mentors and Mentees
All mentors should strive to welcome the player to the forums and offer their assistance should they ask for it. Each mentee will automatically be assigned a mentor upon joining the forums. A mentee, by default, will be opted-IN to the program but can choose to opt out if they prefer.

Each mentor will ideally get one mentee at a time. This is obviously contingent upon the total number of mentors that apply and mentees that join the forums. At such time as the mentor/mentee process reaches the drawdown, concluded, or inactive stages, a new mentee could be assigned to a mentor.

Mentors will receive their mentees based on a couple of factors (precedence in descending order):

  1. Current mentor status: Mentors in the aforementioned statuses will be considered first, though unassigned mentors will get precedence.
  2. Interest match of the mentee to mentor: Example: if a mentee expresses interest in the SPSF then a general or SPSF soldier will get mentorship priority.
  3. Mentor preference, if stated

Status Breakdown

There are seven different statuses that a mentor/mentee could be in:

  1. Unassigned: This means that you, as a mentor, do not currently have an active, dedicated mentee. While you do not have a mentee, it is recommended that you serve as a role model for the community and generally be a guide for newer players in public spaces (greeting new forum users, answering questions when they are asked, providing access to information, etc.)
  2. First Contact: This means that you, as the mentor, have been assigned a mentee and are in the process of introducing yourself, getting started, explaining your role in their development, and what sort of goals you and the mentee have for each other.
  3. Training: This stage is all about guiding the mentee through their initial days and weeks in the region. You might help the mentee with understanding relevant regional history, drafting mock laws, going on R/D missions together, or whatever else the mentee has identified as their interests.
  4. Maintenance: During this stage, you are giving the mentee slightly more space, by allowing them to stand on their feet more. Perhaps encouraging them to introduce that idea they had into the Assembly, run for a seat in government, file an amicus brief with the Court, etc.
  5. Drawdown: After you (and to a certain extent, the mentee) have reached a satisfactory point in their training, such as a successful election to government, passage of a law, several SPSF missions completed, etc. You will begin to draw down your handholding and push them, metaphorically, from the nest into the community. You will still be there for them, and if they appear to retreat from public life, find out what might be needed.
  6. Conclusion: After several weeks/months, the mentee is now a fully-fledged member of the community and contributes toward the betterment of the region. At this point, your mentorship is at an end; you should still interact with the mentee, but more as a friend and peer, rather than a student/mentee.
  7. Inactive/CTE: This stage occurs when the mentee either CTEs, stops responding for more than a week, or moves regions. If the mentee is at risk of going into this status, the mentor should make a concerted effort to reach out to their mentee (Discord, forum, TG, etc.) to get them back into active status.

Mentor Guide

The mentorship program does not have a dedicated playbook planned, nor does it have any specific curriculum or path that needs to be followed. However, there are a couple of broad strokes that should be achieved:

  1. The mentee should get integrated into the community. Whether it be through active debate, seeking election, or participation in various groups (cards, SPSF, etc.), success will be measured by the mentee’s activities post-mentorship.
  2. Mentees should have a general grasp of TSP history, especially on events within the last year or two. I am not saying that a mentee (nor mentor) should have to know what took place on May 26, 2016 or anything, but just a general overview of what did happen at that time.
  3. Mentees should have a general grasp of TSP culture. They will largely find this out for themselves as culture evolves, but the basics of SPIT and Lampshades (and why some of our categories are named in certain ways) helps.
  4. The mentor should have a sense of achievement when the mentee is set loose. If you don’t feel like you made a positive impact on the mentee (and the region), then your work might not be quite done yet.
  5. To an extent, you might also plan on your mentee taking over a position you might hold. This is similar in line with the deputy idea that the Cabinet had whereby a minister is training their successor.

If you have any questions, comments on how to improve, other feedback, or would like to register to become a mentor, please comment below.

MENTORS: Please DM me or reply to this thread with your specialty/interests that you would like to mentor for should a new forum user appear with those specific interests.

NOTE: The graph as it stands is for visual representation at this moment only; once actual mentees begin joining, the graph will be reset.

Thanks for publishing this! I’m excited to see where this goes. I’d say my specialties/interests would be the military, the Assembly, and tech development; if you or other see my personal strengths or interests differently, that’s fine as well, though I will say I’d rather not be offering up semi-official legal commentary or advice outside of the Court.

With respect to feedback — from reading this over, it feels a little more formal than I might have imagined. For instance, if someone’s interested in the military, it’d probably be my job to train them anyway and be available to support them, and having these different statuses feels like administrative overhead in that context. I do think having someone reach out and make themselves available to answer questions or offer advice is valuable, but I guess my personal mental image of a mentor was more of an advisor or resource than a teacher or trainer. (I also think that could make the combination of automatic opt-ins plus every mentee being assigned a mentor more manageable, as opposed to cookie-cutter welcome messages and mentorship if there’s less of a mindset to cover all the bases in ‘training’ the mentee.)

Feedback aside, though, I do want to close this off on a more upbeat note because I do think it’s fantastic that the Ministry of Engagement is working on a project like this. It’s evident that a good amount of thought went into this and overall I would say it’s looking pretty great!

Thank you for the feedback; much of this is likely to change as things become calibrated to the successes and failures of the program.

I took the liberty of taking the first two new forum users today as my mentees to find out exactly what I would be getting y’all into, so expect some calibration based on that too.

Referring to the different statuses, I can totally see how it might look a bit too formal and administrative. This will likely change over time, as I said.

In your military example, the goal is to ensure that the mentee is given to the right mentor, more so that they are guaranteed to get to the area that they want to be in, but also to make sure that the other mentors are utilized just as well with someone who wants to work on legislation stuff mostly. You might very well be helping them with training and ops (even if you weren’t formally their mentor), but this way, you are also able to be a bit more one-on-one with them to ensure that they got the desired experience and understanding from that.

I would also like to reiterate that this thread is also not the official “you must follow this” guide. It is really just a space where I (or whoever) can keep track of the mentor/mentee breakdown. Each individual mentor will advise/train/support/etc. their mentee how they best see fit. Success is measured in the retention of the mentee rather than a test of some sort.

Thank you again for the feedback!

All right, everyone!

Today marks one full month since the public release of this thread and the launch of the mentoring program.

Where are we at? What do we think? What improvements can be made? Are there any particularly glaring issues?

I have thoughts of my own but I would like to get everyone’s input before I go off and say my part.


I guess I’ll go!

Well, after having an initial pilot group of about 30 nations, I noticed several things:

  1. Only about a third of the mentees(and declining) are still active - this is likely the initial wave of activity and then inactivity; it will be interesting how many make it to two months.
  2. It was hard to wrangle the mentors via PM - it was definitely manageable, but I fear for whoever succeeds me in this.
  3. Many of the mentees went off and joined RP or only posted their legislator application - perhaps changing when mentors get assigned is in order?
  4. Many of my mentees only read my “hello” to them and didn’t bother to respond - not much you can do about that, but it happened a couple of times.
  5. I had to take your word on things - this obviously isn’t a bad thing, and I trust each of you to steer the mentor/mentee relationships in the best way you can. However, I can’t look at best practices from this POV.
  6. There was trouble with some of the mentor/mentee matches not working out - some of this stems from general inactivity, and some stemmed from a lack of initial interest being shown on part of the mentee.
  7. The number of roleplay-only members- I honestly did not expect this, partly because I have the roleplay area muted. Going forward, would it be wise to include the RP mods as mentors? Or would we want to drop RP mentees in the future?

What do y’all think of this assessment? Do y’all have anything to add?

Absolutely, and I think it would be wise to include them more in community development discussions in general, not only in the mentor program.

I hadn’t posted anything earlier because none of my mentees responded to me, so I didn’t really have much input to give.

I think we can open this discussion up to the public?

I don’t know if I really need a mentor when I got into roleplay, honestly because discussion on the roleplay Discord seemed more active and it wasn’t hard to just pop in and ask some questions about getting started. I think we could learn some lessons from that about making it easier to ask questions instead of just blindly assigning mentors to members who may not be that interested.

Having a ‘mentor’ doesn’t really make sense to a new player without context, to be honest. After all, this is a browser game that people play for fun, and it’s not immediately obvious why having an experienced advisor or teacher would be relevant to… simulating a nation? Realistically, some drop off is expected and I don’t think it reflects any drastic failings in the mentor program so far, but I do think that it’s pragmatic to focus on the players who go make a map claim or a legislator application and actually express some interest in an area where the role of a mentor becomes more obvious. It’s not like one needs a mentor for chatting in the Lampshade Bar & Grill.

Definitely! This thread is open to anyone who wishes to comment!

Responding to the rest of your reply, I do agree with that. I think it might be necessary to have them opt-in rather than opt-out and place the point of reaching out at the acceptance of legislator status.

I think the coordinator will need to identify what platform is most used by the mentors and work with each mentor through the platform that works best for them. I, as a difficult to wrangle mentor, know that I was not properly utilizing the forum PM system :stuck_out_tongue:

In order to assign a mentor who is relevant to their interests? (e.g. that idk anything about RP) I don’t hate this idea.

I feel like it would be a good idea to reach out to the RP mods to let them know about our existing mentor program, their thoughts on it, and if they’d like to play a role.

I feel like this is relevant. It might be better if mentors just introduce themselves as established members who are there to chat or answer questions, instead of saying "I am your Mentor :tm: "

That’s spitballing, not super dedicated to it.

Yes, I definitely agree with that. There is no need to use forum PMs if Discord DMs or NS TGs are more convenient for each pair.

I have reached out to the RP mods (Lord Gianni and Qwert) to gauge their interest in becoming mentors and/or getting their input on how best to integrate new forum users that want to RP. Developments should hopefully come in the next few days.

As of now, based on the feedback I received and my own ideas for change, the updates to the mentor program are as follows:

  • The program is now Opt-in rather than Opt-out. This will rely on the creation of a thread to take new sign-ups and/or the utilization of my “welcome” posts to direct them to the sign-up thread.
  • The program, as of now, will still target people that arrive on the forums rather than those that get accepted into legislator status. This change will be reviewed again when I hear back from the RP mods, and after some time has passed after the Opt-in change has been made.
  • Whatever platform for communication is best for the mentee (and closely followed by mentor preference) will be primarily used. I am fine with different communication platforms being used, but I want to ensure that the mentee is not the one forced to jump through hoops to communicate.

What does everyone think of these changes? Any tweaks? Commentary?

Thanks for taking a look at this!

I’d be good to test the idea of it being opt-in rather than opt-out.

I will say, maybe instead of posting in their introduction thread “if you want a mentor, post in this thread to request one”, we could make it be a post that says “one thing we offer to new members is a TSP mentor to show you around the region, is that something you’re interested in?” and then they can respond in thier original welcome thread. The goal of this is just to reduce clutter and also to streamline things as much as possible for the new member, while also giving them a chance to be introduced to the concept of a mentor and explicitly request or refuse one.

One idea for the future (probably not right now) would be to have “RMB referrals” or such. i.e. if there’s a particularly promising, interested, or bright new player on the RMB, someone who is active there could note the player for the Mentorship Coordinator and they could be assigned a mentor.

I agree completely! I was talking more about the platform your reach the mentors by to inform them of their mentees. That said, it’s always going to be a balancing act of convenience for the Coordinator, Mentor, and Mentee - but in general it should always favor the Mentee.

Overall, I’m happy with these changes and look forward to hearing back from Qwert and Gianni!

I agree with this. I will edit my welcome posts accordingly!

I think that is a brilliant idea. I think it would also allow us to market the forums in a testimonial sort of way.
Example: Nation X joins the forums, enjoys the support and interactions they get, and goes back to the RMB as an advocate for the further migration of people to the forums.

Ah! I see! Well, I also agree with that and could certainly send out assignment notifications to the platform of choice. To that end, I have also added a “platform of choice” column to the table and will work on filling it in over the coming days.

On a related note, I received responses from the RP mods, and they indicated that they would like to remain separate from the mentor program. They indicated that the RP sphere is not the best for mentor/mentee relationships and works better with a “jump right in” attitude.

If someone arrives at the forum looking for RP specifically, then it would be best to direct them there and encourage them to learn by “jumping in” the thick of it. If a new forum user wants to do RP and also government-related work, then the mentor program could/would handle the government portion of their integration.


violently coughs

BUMP :cry:

I happen to disagree with this. It is true that you cannot "teach" RP, but a mentor relationship would still be important in the sense of having someone who knows the world and can answer your questions about the history up to that point, guide you as you engage in nation building, and overall just is there to lend their experience within TSPRP.

It’s one thing to say “you can ask anyone in the RP server”, which is true enough but not everyone is comfortable doing that, but it’s quite another to have someone tell you personally “I’m here if you have any questions or just want to bounce ideas off me about your country”.

I’m mainly skeptical of an RP mentor system that focuses on ‘training’ or ‘assistance’ because I don’t see RP as something to be trained or taught. I agree that having someone to answer questions is useful, but I really don’t know if that requires all the bureaucratic overhead of a formal mentorship program. Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t think it should take a formal roster of mentors, requiring someone to manage mentor-mentee pairings and keep track of which of seven different statuses each pair is in. We can just tell people, “I’m here if you have any questions or just want to bounce ideas off me about your country” as they join. We’re talking about people coming in with an expressed interest in RP here…

I don’t have much (really, any) RP experience, but intuitively agree with Kris that it’s easier to get integrated into things when there’s someone you know who is available to answer your questions. If we extend the argument that’s being made, then all mentorship is pointless because you can just ask a question. To me, at least, the goal is more points of contact, which will work for some people but not others.

That said, if we don’t have staffing or support in the RP player base, it’ll be hard to pull off regardless of what we want. Maybe after more discussion, we could attempt to make a case for it to various RPers to act as mentors?

I think we are visualising two different things. I don't think that a hypothetical RP Mentor would need to "train" anyone or constantly talk with their mentee. That is as nebulous and possibly unhelpful as trying to "teach" foreign affairs management. That being said, let's consider three things about people who express an interest in joining TSPRP:
  • They will not necessarily have the context of how things work here or what things (i.e. history, key players, international organisations) they will need to consider as they make their way around RP. These could be issues that are not always written down somewhere because everyone who is present already knows them as a matter of public knowledge.

  • They will not always be skilled at roleplaying. They will have the excitement but they may not necessarily know what to do, how to build their country, or how to reach out to others and create collaborative storylines. I have heard all too often the typical “I don’t post because I don’t have any ideas”.

  • TSP has an established community and this can be daunting. I don’t deny that people can be friendly, but in a community where people already know each other and have a history with each other it can be easy for a new person to feel like they don’t fit, or for them not to reach out to others either to roleplay together or even to ask questions.

This is where an RP Mentor could make a difference. They do not need to teach or train, but what they should ideally do is make an initial contact with the newcomer, let them know that they are here to help, and perhaps figure out with them what it is they hope to do within RP. It’s not about setting up a bureaucracy, but I do think TSPRP would benefit from not letting people to just “jump right in” when more could be done to help people get settled.

This would also be a plus for the mentor, who would meet new members and have an early chance to build close ties with people who could be active contributors to TSPRP. It’s a win-win.

My bad — the training/assistance wording lifted from communications with Griffindor. I agree with you here; I was just clarifying that my skepticism of an RP mentor system was more specifically directed toward the idea of ‘teaching’ RP than it was towards having any RP mentorship in general. I actually agree with the benefits you’ve outlined! The area where we might disagree is:

I agree that it shouldn’t be about setting up a bureaucracy, but the system as it currently stands still feels awfully bureaucratic. It feels to me like we’re discussing something rather quite simple — reaching out to newcomers and making ourselves available for questions, ideas, and so forth. I’m not convinced that requires a formal government-run mentorship program, with a coordinator to manually pair up newcomers with mentors, and a system of seven different detailed statuses to keep track of for each pairing.

Maybe that goes for the mentorship program in general, to be honest. I think having an underlying culture of welcoming newcomers is the key factor here and that goes beyond questions like “should the mentorship program be opt-in or opt-out” or “are forum PMs a good way to communicate with mentors” — ideally, in the long-term, I’d hope we don’t need a government program just to get ourselves to welcome new players…

I must admit that I had not fully read the OP, so I was not aware of those "seven statuses" or the rest of the bureaucracy to which you kept referring. Having read the OP, I would agree that the project seems a bit too bureaucratic in its design. I imagine a mentor, whether RP or any other kind, as someone who makes themselves available to the mentee and helps where needed, but also as someone who does not otherwise need to follow a set process to "train" or "teach" their mentee.

The way I would build a mentorship project would be to assign a mentor upon application to legislator or roleplayer status and for the mentor to act, for lack of a better term, as a companion who can be the primary conduit for any questions that the mentee may have. There would be no need for statuses or any detailed tracking beyond the occasional contact with mentees to see if their mentor is actually making themselves available to them. The focus would be on giving newcomers the opportunity to build relationships with established members and to give them a way to learn things at their own pace. It’s possible that the mentee may ghost their mentor, and that’s on the mentee, but at least for some the opportunity will still be there for the taking.

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