Jack Welch, former GE Chairman popularized “reverse mentoring” over a decade ago. He ordered his top 600 managers to find Internet junkies among their ranks and become their students. With the ever-increasing role of technology in business, the concept is now even more relevant.
Alan Webber explains reverse mentoring as older workers, realizing they need to be more aware of new developments, connecting with the younger employees. The younger employees bring fresh ideas and the ability to use technology in every aspect of their lives. Two individuals in a mentoring relationship can result in many times the value in creating new ideas and solutions.
Would reverse mentoring be beneficial to your business? Here are some suggestions to help you get started.
KEEP IT INFORMAL
Reverse mentoring is free from the stuffy pressures of formal, structured mentoring. It starts with a meaningful conversation and has the potential to evolve into a substantive relationship.
BE WILLING TO LEARN
Both parties act in the capacity of mentor as well as mentee; both must genuinely want to learn from and share with the other.
MAKE IT A TWO-WAY STREET
Insights should flow in both directions.
In a mentor relationship, both parties must be valued, fresh and seasoned ideas have relevance.
One and one equals two. Both parties act in the capacity of mentor as well as mentee; both must genuinely want to learn from and share with the other. The goal is to push one another out of their comfort zone and try new ways of thinking and working.
TRUST & TRANSPARENCY
An enduring mentoring relationship requires trust, a clear understanding of what you both hope to achieve and contribute.
Both parties must be open about what they are thinking and feeling. They must be able to accommodate differences in communication styles and open to seeing situations from a different perspective.
Learn from this humorous video. Do you recognize yourself? If so, maybe a reverse mentoring relationship is in your future. Click Here