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Reverse Mentorship: Younger employees are teaching their bosses

Without disrespecting the knowledge of those who have lived longer, those who are into their latter years can still learn from younger folks.

Man teaching younger assistant representing reverse mentorship

Society often views older people as wiser and more experienced. While that may be true, throughout time, we’ve picked up on cues that led us to a discovery of truth: there’s a lot to learn from younger people.

Young and fresh doesn’t automatically equate to immature and unwise, especially in the workplace. Executives that have held their positions for decades can provide insight, lecture, and experience, but newer generations have a lot to offer, too. 

This idea is often called “reverse mentoring,” which is a valuable asset among business owners and employees alike. The technique surfaced in the 90s in efforts to help share technology skills among teams. With society now being in our pandemic Era, which greatly changed the way we see careers today, the idea has found new bearing in the current world. It helps companies that are navigating hybrid and remote work atmospheres, inclusion and diversity, as well as new skills.

Reverse Mentorship is basically a way of reversing traditional methods of leadership by doing the complete opposite of what we did in previous years. Lower-level (usually younger) employees can help teach their managers about new trends on social media, what consumers are into now, and much more.

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Offering guidance, collaborating on shared experiences, and connecting to team members that are in different positions than you can be great for jobs that are transitioning into newer ideals. Creative collaboration sparks innovative ideas, boosts morale, and creates better retention opportunities in careers all across the board. 

It’s also an easy idea for companies to adopt, making it more appealing to businesses that are set in traditional ways of working. The concept is gaining traction, which is good news for the future if you’re looking for a glimmer of hope like most of us are. Intergenerational awareness is finally becoming the new thing, and we’re hopeful it’ll stick around as our country continues to transform into the realm of the future.

Seeing views from other perspectives is an idea that some may say is losing value as world issues intensify, but luckily, the conversation in the workplace has begun.

Macie LaCau is a passionate writer, herbal educator, and dog enthusiast. She spends most of her time overthinking and watering her tiny tomatoes.

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