Reverse mentoring refers to a means of skills development and learning where a person with a lot of experience seeks the advice of an employee with less experience.
How Does Reverse Mentoring Work?
Reverse mentoring requires the participation of an employee with many years’ experience and one who is just starting out in their career.
Unlike standard mentoring, the employee with the fewest years of experience acts as mentor. The most experienced employee takes on the role of mentee.
The junior employee shares their knowledge, vision and ideas with the senior employee. This relationship enables the senior employee to see things from a new angle, to better grasp new issues facing less experienced workers, and to update their knowledge.
Why Is Reverse Mentoring Important?
Reverse mentoring is important to ensure a better flow of information and knowledge between employees with different levels of experience. It also enables experienced workers to familiarize themselves with new technologies that are often better mastered by younger employees.
Reverse mentoring helps build strong bonds between a company’s employees, whatever their level of experience. It also helps foster an open and inclusive workplace.
What Is the Goal of Reverse Mentoring?
The goal of reverse mentoring is to offer a fresh perspective to more experienced employees and to value the knowledge and work of less experienced employees.
What Are Some Examples of Reverse Mentoring in the Workplace?
Examples of reverse mentoring at work include:
- Monthly meetings between a store manager and a delivery clerk with less than a year’s experience, to discuss the challenges faced by the employee and better understand their vision of the world of work.
- Mentoring between a junior employee in the human resources department and an employee with over 15 years’ experience, to discuss new recruitment challenges.
What Are the Benefits of Reverse Mentoring?
The benefits of reverse mentoring include:
- Giving a fresh perspective to more experienced employees
- Increasing the retention rate of less experienced employees
- Increasing sharing of digital knowledge
- Building a strong corporate culture
- Strengthening bonds between employees
- Promoting diversity in the workplace
- Valuing knowledge and opinions of junior employees
- Developing employees’ knowledge and skills
- Increasing employee commitment
What Are the Disadvantages of Reverse Mentoring?
The disadvantages of reverse mentoring include:
- Senior employees’ apprehensions
- Lack of employee commitment
- The mismatch between the reverse mentoring program and employee needs