The ultimate Jedi Guide to mentoring junior developers

Guide to mentoring junior developers

We all know that Yoda was the ultimate mentor. The Jedi Master’s life wisdom can be applied to almost all walks of life – even mentoring new graduate developers.

Enjoy our wisdom-filled Jedi Guide to becoming a tech mentor and watch your software developer padawans rise to fulfil their technical destinies.

Mentoring new tech hires and junior developers, the ultimate intergalactic guide:


“You must unlearn what you have learned”

Yoda tells Luke

(Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back)

Sometimes a new tech job requires a little bit of unlearning. If the new hire is taking over and updating existing code, they might have to alter the way they’re used to writing.

Besides writing in different programming languages, companies organise teams, execute strategies and delegate work differently – and sometimes it’s easy to forget just how much there is to take in when starting a new job. 

Whether tech recruits are fresh from university or have a few years programming experience, they will need help to learn the company’s processes and procedures, as well as the ins and outs of the role itself.

Consider setting up an onboarding programme to help your new hires settle in.


“In my experience, there is no such thing as luck.”

Obi-Wan tells Han Solo

(Episode IV: A New Hope)

(OK, so this quote isn’t from Yoda – but Obi-Wan Kenobi was also a member of the Jedi Order.)

Imparting a good attitude to junior developers is just as important as empowering them with the technical skills they need to succeed in the role.

Relying on other team members to carry the load, doing the bare minimum required or simply hoping luck will push a piece of work over the finish line are traits that will come back to haunt graduates in their future roles.

Whether it’s at your company or in their next role – hopefully many years down the line – their attitude to work will speak volumes about their past experiences. And as their mentor, you’re in a unique position to shape it.


“Do or do not. There is no try.”

Yoda tells Luke

(Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back)

Great programming requires 100% focus and dedication. As well as mastering the languages required in the role, successful developers need to stay on top of the latest trends and developments – and this is where mentoring can make a huge difference.

Helping junior developers broaden their experience will prepare them for the next step in their career, whatever that may be.


“Patience you must have, my young Padawan.”

Yoda tells Luke

(Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back)

No one becomes a Jedi Master – or a JavaScript expert – overnight. Patience is a virtue in whichever galaxy you inhabit, and it’s a crucial skill to impart to new recruits. Coding takes patience, time, a supportive workplace and, of course, a lot of great mentoring.


“Always pass on what you have learned.”

Yoda tells Luke

(Episode VI: Return of the Jedi)

The Force is strong with the developer community. There are hundreds of forums, groups and tools to share experiences and pass on programming knowledge. But this doesn’t compare to having reliable, inspirational mentors to guide new tech hires through their first roles and up the developer career ladder.

So, keep doing what you’re doing, Masters of the Mentoring Universe.


Wondering what key soft skills developers need to succeed? Take a look at our post on the topic and rise up the mentoring ranks from Knight to Jedi Master.

  Image by Yuri Turkov /