You are
or
desire to help your

Engineering Manager,
Team leader

For first-time leaders, I aim to set you up for success within 12 weeks, rather than leaving you to sink or swim over 2 years.

I guide you to set up your leadership foundation and fix your priorities, boosting both: your leadership skills and the business.

Engineering director,
Tribe leader

Let me to help you to change your mindset.

Move away from being busy/operational 🔥 to thinking strategically 🎯, and scale your teams, while hitting delivery goals in parallel.

CTO,
Engineering VP

You might feel alone, caught between two hard places. The leadership board is asking you to hit the goals, while your teams are asking for help. You’re looking for an experienced person to validate your thoughts,  and help you execute the mission. I’m here to listen and guide you.

Your stories

Purpose

I MENTOR / COACH ENGINEERING LEADERS TO master their impact and DO PRODUCT BETTER.

Mentoring packages

Introduction session 🙂

FREE
  • Our first intro talk is rather informal. Together, we'll dive into:
  • 1️⃣ Giving you all the details regarding how mentoring works, 2️⃣ You'll explain the motivation and current situation, 3️⃣ We'll check if we have a win-win.
  • The intro is free of charge as we need to validate the chemistry fit first. If anything, I'd be delighted to get to know each other more and expand our network.
  • There are loads of people passively waiting 🙂

Single deep-dive ⚡️

CZK 10.000 / h
  • "I need help now!" You have a complex use case to resolve
  • You need to validate your thoughts/progress/path
  • You'll explain the situation you are in or the task you were given
  • We validate your hypothesis and alternatives
  • We finalise the direct solution and the battle plan
  • We do a written follow-up after applying the medicine, including next steps

12-Session Continuous Package
Scheme

CZK

96.000

/ 6 months

bi-weekly sessions

All the clients find themselves in the different situations, conditions and company stage. Therefore, at our intro session, we’ll establish the North Star and assemble the program with the most impactful topics, reflecting your needs:

Engineering Manager

  1. Embrace your team: First 30-60-90 day plan to thrive in leading the new or existing team. Build the team charter.
  2. Avoid at all cost: Top 8 f**k-ups most engineering managers do: perfection mindset killer, how to seek satisfaction, friend to all, busy mindset, shooting for 100% consensus, s**t field only, and more.
  3. Personal productivity: Boost your todo lists, calendar, meetings, and more.
  4. Product: How to embrace the product and the business: Product discovery, execution and adoption.
  5. Synergy: Product Manager and Engineering Manager as Partners in crime. How to we mitigate gaps for good.
  6. Prioritization frameworks: How do I handle my daily priorities right? Types of prioritization, dimensions, inter-connection with outcomes.
  7. Estimates: Truth about impact over effort. Estimate units. Estimate tricks and checklist.
  8. Agility ceremonies: Secret tips to boost your meetings.
  9. Meetings: One-on-ones tricks, retro tips, and other meeting types.
  10. Delegation how to and principles, odacity.
  11. Profiles: How to deal with nerds, geeks, hero complex, under performers, or negative whistle blowers. 
  12. Star: How to boost your personal impact, helping your manager and peers.

Manager of Managers

  1. Strategy mindset: Focus on what matter the most: Transition from thinking operational tasks to strategy.
  2. Delivery hero: How to deliver 80%+ of the roadmap consistently: step by step framework.
  3. Leadership boost: Be the Leader worth following. Set up your leadership principles.
  4. Time to Value: What agility means in real. No books. Work flow and methodology. 
  5. Metrics: How to set and measure success. KPIs, OKRs and goals.
  6. Reports: How to create real time efficiency reports to spot inefficiencies quickly.
  7. Set up your hiring pipeline:  Hiring and Firing kung-fu. Hiring hooks: How to win the candidate I want.
  8. Performance reviews: How to lead performance review talks as a king. 
  9. PDP/IDP: Create fabulous personal development plans.
  10. Feedback: Secret tips to enable feedback gathering and continuous improvements (individual, team, systems) 
  11. Tech debt: How to talk about the technical improvements and balance them with product opportunities.
  12. Bigger-scale change master: How to influence, win the argumentation and execute the change up to adoption.

CTO

  1. Create alignment: From Vision to tasks: Learn to set and execute the product and tech strategy. Balance the product and technology investment.
  2. Understand Time to Value: How to understand agility in real. No books. Work flow and methodologies: missions, shape up, scrum, kanban picks.
  3. Delivery ^2: How to turn our teams to ammunition that blasts and conquers competition.
  4. Metrics: Implement KPI and OKR reports with real time data.
  5. Structure: Org types, master reorgs: mission teams, micro teams, hierarchy options.
  6. Grow: How to consolidate and scale up. Keep delivery high while growing in headcount. 
  7. Culture: Identify, define and set your culture up.
  8. Career framework: Functional frameworks, examples, working templates.
  9. Innovate: Enable Learning mindset, system and  innovation.
  10. Communication: Communicating and reporting with the executive board members.
  11. Financial boost: Understanding company valuation metrics, compensation and budgeting.
  12. M&A: Identify the right investment, startup evaluation criteria, due diligence, merge execution: culture, systems, processes
⚡️Operational work: If you’re facing a heavy operational topic or situation, we are good to cover it at our session. You can validate your thoughts, your tactic and gain a valid solution.

Network: Expand your knowledge and reach. Jo our Engineering Leaders CZ Community.

🎁 Finalisation: During the mentoring program and at its finalisation phase, we will do a review with the direct manager, if applicable.

Companies

Are you looking for other ways of boosting a multitude of your teams in the company?

Check out our If you wish to consult and advise on your career journey, help you land an excellent job, get proficient at interview talks, boost your personal brand in 3 months, or to help you establish your full solo business in 6 months, I’m pleased to navigate you in your journey.

Education

Supporting education is an integral part of giving back to the community early enough. So far, we have excellent partnerships with
Education is supported exclusively free of charge.

Engineering leader mentoring guide

Location

Remote: video call link.

On-site: opero.cz , Salvátorská 931/8
Prague, Czech Republic.

How does mentoring work?

An initial mentoring session is free of charge.

Each subsequent session has a clear outcome summarised at the end, with agreement on a principal follow-up action item for the mentee to progress towards our North star ⭐️

Rule #1

You are hungry to grow. 🌳 If interest or progress is low, the lessons will be canceled. My aim is to help those who express a high level of motivation. Our time on Earth is expensive.

Rule #2

All specific topics and personal issues are not be communicated outside of our sessions. What’s said between us, stays between us. 🙉

Rule #3

🚀 We are well organised. We clearly define a top follow-up topic. We check the progress at the beginning of each session.

Scope

1️⃣ At the first session, we aim to get to know each other, understand the motivation, and draw a set of initial milestones on the timeline to ensure we'll be heading in the right direction.

2️⃣ The following sessions primarily tackle specific operational issues a mentee expects to cover.

3️⃣ After we pass 4-5 sessions, I tend to steer the focus towards our pre-agreed goals, moving away from operational to strategic thinking.

⬆️ Get even more inspiration from the most in-demand topics above. Though you must already have a good starting point since you've come to this page

Cadence

I recommend a one-hour weekly or bi-weekly frequency so that the mentee has enough time to digest the information and action a follow-up item.

After three months, we’ll debrief to review progress and provide feedback, optimally with your manager. We’ll take a momentary break to keep our to-do list from getting too long.

FAQ

🤝 "What can I anticipate during our initial call?"

First and foremost, I’d be delighted for the opportunity to connect with you and mutually broaden our professional circles. During our initial meeting, the primary objective is to assess whether a mentoring relationship would be mutually rewarding and fulfilling. We’ll also explore whether there’s a good personal rapport between us.
I will provide a comprehensive overview of my experience and the mechanics of the mentorship program.
Afterward, I’ll open the floor for you to discuss your current challenges and future aspirations.
In a nutshell, by the end of our conversation, we’ll determine if we’re both well-suited for a beneficial partnership.
This initial consultation is free of charge.

Additionally, I’d be happy to assist you in making a compelling case to your direct supervisor about the value of investing in your personal and professional growth.

1️⃣ "What should I expect at our first formal session?"
The objective of our first official meeting is to uncover your driving forces and establish our guiding vision, complete with a clear definition of what success looks like for you. During this session, we’ll delve into various facets of your life, including your values, current circumstances, and future objectives. We’ll also take the time to align these discoveries with your existing personal development plan.
"Do you rather provide mentoring or coaching?"
I think beginning with mentoring and transitioning gradually to coaching after building mutual trust is advantageous for several reasons:
  1. Establishing a trust foundation: By starting with mentoring, a solid trust foundation is formed between the mentor and the mentee. This initial mentoring phase ensures that the mentee feels supported, understood, and guided by an experienced individual.
  2. Addressing pressing areas: The mentoring mode in the initial sessions enables us to focus on addressing immediate and pressing areas of concern for the mentee. This involves providing advice, sharing experiences, and offering solutions to specific challenges or problems.
  3. Transfer of knowledge and skills: During the mentoring phase, the mentor can share their expertise, knowledge, and skills with the mentee. This knowledge transfer helps the mentee develop a stronger foundation and gain valuable insights that can be applied to their personal growth and development.
  4. Establishing a personal connection: Through mentoring, a personal connection is established between the mentor and mentee. This connection enhances mutual understanding, empathy, and rapport, which are crucial for effective coaching.
  5. Utilizing open-ended coaching questions: Once the pressing areas have been resolved and a sense of trust has been established, the transition to coaching becomes more effective. Coaching focuses on empowering the mentee to find their own solutions and make decisions through the use of open-ended questioning. This approach encourages critical thinking, self-reflection, and independent problem-solving skills.
By starting with mentoring and gradually shifting to coaching, we create a supportive and trusting environment where the mentee can benefit from guidance while also exploring their own capabilities. This approach facilitates a smoother transition into coaching, where the mentee takes on a more active role in their personal growth and development.
"How long does mentoring last?"
Working together, we’ll probably meet our initial goals in 3-6 months. My experience is that people are keen to cover 8-12 sessions, followed by a 3-month break, co that a mentee has time to execute and adopt the choden improvement. After 3 months, we do the 1st both-party debrief, to review the outcomes and provide feedback.
🛑 "What are the prerequisites for continuing our collaborative journey?"
First and foremost, the goal of our mentorship is to achieve tangible progress, rather than just engaging in intellectual discussions. To this end, each session will conclude with a practical homework assignment, which we expect to be completed most of the time. Secondly, open and honest communication is vital; the more transparent you are about your intentions and challenges, the more effectively I can assist you in addressing specific situations and achieving your goals. Lastly, rest assured that our conversations are strictly confidential, and no private information will be disclosed.
"Can you provide any references?" 🚀
The most valid reference is word of mouth. Ask people in your network about me. Chances are I’ve coached some of your colleagues or friends. If you want more, see my > testimonials.
📝 "Will I obtain any leadership certificate after our mentoring is over?"

If a certificate is your main goal, then we are not compatible.

We shoot for a different goal: boosting your skills in real, not on paper.

"How can you support me in securing my career development?"
I offer specialized introductory sessions that include your direct manager. During this meeting, we’ll seek their approval on your proposed guiding vision (“North Star”) and what constitutes success at the conclusion of the mentorship. To maintain open lines of communication, we can mutually agree that I’ll share updates on our progress with your manager. At the end of our mentoring journey, we’ll conduct a comprehensive review with your manager to assess if we’ve achieved the previously defined success metrics, along with recommendations for future steps in your career.
"Do you offer mentoring to individuals or to company employees?"

In 2023, 19% of my clients were self-funded. Nevertheless, I like seeing your company contributing fully or partially to your personal boost.

📺 "Can we facilitate the sessions on site or remotely?"

We facilitate the sessions mostly online using Zoom. I love meeting clients f2f for introduction or  for the regular sessions in Prague, Czech Republic.

👉 "Why should I trust you, Marian?"

Most certainly, there are plenty of great coaches in the field I respect.

Nevertheless, I believe I strongly differentiate in the following areas:

  1. My technical background is an asset. I’ve been there with you. Moving from a developer over architect to a senior manager of 100+ reports. I know how it feels to be an introvert.
  2. I know what works and what does not. I know how to understand delivery and culture without spreading agility dogma all over the place. I know how to save you months to quarters of trials and errors.
  3. My profile is the mindset of a gardener. I grow by making people around me grow.
  4. In 2023, I’ve facilitated 300+ mentoring sessions. See more data.
  5. My Mentoring triangle of Strength strategy puts me in an unbeatable spot as a mentor.
  6. With regard to territory, you might consider speaking with me in your native language (CZ, SVK) as an asset.
  7. I don’t strictly differentiate between mentoring and coaching, leaving the battle to others. Both of the approaches have their strong points, and I love using both, depending on how far we are.
  8. I have an open network of specialists, geeks, managers and leaders you are free to benefit from.
  9. Pay as you go. I don’t look for any advance payments. My principle is fairness. You pay for the value. If, for any reason, we spot the mutual value is not there, I’m good to cancel the payment and rethink my tactic to improve.
"Is an advance payment required?"

Nope.
The main principle of our cooperations is fairness: Pay as you go, invoice monthly. I’m not looking for long-term contracts draining our budgets.

"Ultimately, is mentoring worth my investment? 💰"
If we’re comparing investing in stock options, ETFs, or housing, it could gain 8% yearly growth. I strongly believe investing in you career and uniqueness is an investment that pays off x10. By boosting your leadership skills, you will quickly prove your strengths and will become a pillar of your company in a year compared to waiting for a promotion for 4-5 years. Moreover, speaking money, your value will grow much faster and the investment will pay off in a year. The choice is yours. What’s the best investment ever? Into yourself. Well-being and education.
How can you persuade your superior to invest in leadership mentoring for you?
I recommend preparing a detailed proposal that outlines the opportunity, motivation, costs, and expected return on investment (ROI):
  1. Identify the key areas for improvement:
    • Soft skills development, such as enhancing communication, mastering delegation principles, achieving work-life balance, caring for people, conducting performance reviews, fostering learning, etc.
    • Delivery improvements, including consistently delivering 80+% of the roadmap, optimizing the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), refining discovery and adoption processes, and improving team structure.
    • Strategic advancements, like setting and evaluating Objectives and Key Results (OKRs), goal setting, strategy execution, and scalability.
  2. For inspiration, explore additional opportunities at https://www.kamenistak.com/mentoring/#scheme and select your top 3 goals.
  3. Regarding costs, a package of 12 sessions is priced at 98,000 CZK.
  4. To determine the value, document the anticipated improvements and their impacts (e.g., a 20% increase in efficiency, a 15% reduction in costs within 6 months, a 12% decrease in the cost of delay) and calculate the total monetary value over a one-year period.
  5. Calculate the ROI: ROI = (Impact in $ – Cost in $) / Cost in $ * 100%. For instance, for a team of 6 people with a monthly cost of 180k per person, a 20% efficiency improvement equates to 216k CZK per month or 2.59 million CZK annually. Compared to the 98k CZK cost of mentoring, the ROI is ((2.59 million – 98k) / 98k) * 100%.
  6. Such efficiency gains or cost savings could enable us to reduce expenses or hire a new developer to expand the team.
  7. You and your manager will review the goals at the start of the mentoring program, and we will provide brief updates every 2-3 months.