Getting Mentorship from Delip
In my career, I have mentored more than 100 folks at various skill levels, ranging from folks just starting their career to experienced folks. Many have become well-known people in the field of AI or startup building (it’s all their doing!). I have helped people be their best at:
- AI research
- Product thinking
- Managing people
- Project execution
- Communicating about their work
- Understanding their priors
“In brief, the Awakening Mind
Should be understood to be of two types;
The mind that aspires to awaken
And the mind that ventures to do so.”
— Bodhicaryāvatāra, Śāntideva
What Mentorship with Delip is (and isn’t)
I am not opinionated about what mentoring in general is or should be, but here’s what I have found most fruitful interaction patterns when I have taken on mentees:
1. Mentoring is not a transactional action
For instance, if I have yet to mentor you at length, asking me to give you some career advice randomly will not work. Asking me to review a paper, job app, or negotiate a salary is all help that I might do in other circumstances, but it will not constitute mentoring.
2. The mentee aspires to be great at something
If you are wondering how to make more money with AI, I am not your guy (but hey, more power to you).
3. The mentees are not after specific deadline-bound goals
“Delip, I want to get a paper in 2 months for this next Ph.D. application”,
“Delip, I want to get VC funding asap for my project”,
“Delip, I want to work on topic XYZ because I think …”
“Delip, I want to shift to a management track eventually. How do I ..”
4. Mentoring is not therapy
Although some aspects of it might feel like therapy, such as active listening on my part, it definitely is not therapy. For instance, unlike therapy, I can be very opinionated. Plus, I might question your assumptions and point to things you bluntly. While I mentor neurodivergent people, I highly recommend all my mentees have a therapist (either clinical or spiritual) and fully utilize all other resources at their disposal.
Why do I mentor?
I am a Zen Buddhist priest in training (yes, I used to be a monk once) and have vowed to help all beings for this lifetime. That help can manifest in many ways, and mentoring is just one of the ways. I also do this for free, without expecting any reward.
Finally, there were times when I was at the receiving end of this help, and there were times when I wished someone had helped. I am spinning that giant wheel of giving and receiving that keeps the world going.
What to Expect from Me
1. Time: I mentor very few people because I like to give my current mentees as much time as I can and I have limited mentoring-time.
2. Specificity: I like to give concrete and specific feedback and action items that can be tracked and evaluated. I fully expect you to do that!
3. Resources: When possible, I will try to connect you with people and organizations who can help you.
4. Benevolent bluntness: Truth is best served without sugarcoating but skillfully.
5. Safe/Private/Judgement-free Zone: This one is self-explanatory. Could you please return the favor?
What I Expect from You
1. Time: Be prepared to invest time. Much of my mentoring is hands-on, feedback-driven, and requires you to try things out, read stuff, write something, talk to someone, etc.
2. Resourcefulness: If we decide you will explore something as “homework”, I expect you to think about how best it can be done with whatever limits you find yourself. Giving up or not attempting is not an option.
If you feel we will be a good fit for each other after reading this, reach out to me using this form: