What is Reverse Mentoring?

Continuing in honor of January as National Mentoring Month, in this post, we will discuss a relatively new development in mentoring known as “reverse mentoring.” Be sure to take a look at our previous posts about how to be a great mentor, how to be a great mentee, and the importance of mentoring and how to find one.

Reverse mentoring is where someone younger acts as a mentor to someone who is older, and this generally corresponds with less experience for the mentor and more experience for the mentee. Now you may be wondering how exactly this works, but if you think about the rapid pace that technology has been transforming our world, it makes a lot of sense. Millennials and the younger generations have been called “technology natives.” They have grown up with computers and technology everywhere and a part of their everyday lives.

A younger “mentor” can help you learn how to use technology to improve your business and your personal productivity. They could help you learn to better make use of social media, your smartphone, or other new technological trends that are more specifically tailored to your industry. These things can help modernize your business to get more customers and help you get more work done easier.

Consider that those who have been in an industry for less time generally tend to be more energetic and enthusiastic about it and can provide you with a refreshingly positive perspective that can inspire you and your business to grow or be willing to take a leap to something new or even start a new business.

As we discussed in our post about being a great mentee, it is important to remember that newer (or younger) is not always better. There are certainly disadvantages to some aspects of new technology. For example, consider hacking and other security concerns with technology, or the difficulty of keeping information confidential with how quickly and easily it is to post things on the internet and have them exist there for “forever.” At the end of the day, technology is here to stay and it is important to keep up with it so that you and your business do not fall behind.

If you have a young employee or know someone that is younger and may be interested in your area of business, consider reaching out to them about developing a mentoring relationship between the two of you. After all, all mentoring relationships are a two-way street and provide benefits to both parties, regardless of if you are in a traditional or “reversed” mentoring situation. Some mentoring relationships may not even have a clear mentor and mentee and may be more fluid. Either way, mentoring will help you develop and help your business, career, and/or entrepreneurial aspirations.

If you need legal assistance for your business or in starting a business, do not hesitate to reach out to the Law Office of E.C. Lewis, PC, home of your Denver Business Attorney, Elizabeth Lewis, at 720-258-6647 or email her at elizabeth.lewis@eclewis.com.