By Jan Murray on Thursday 14th March 2019
For employers and organisations with multi-generational workforces now is the time to consider how to build engagement, understanding and productivity across the generations. Cross-generational mentoring could be the answer.
Mentoring relationships tend to provide reciprocal opportunities for learning, with the mentors also benefitting from the unique experiences of their mentee. Organisations shouldn't under-estimate the impact that this collaboration can have in contributing fresh ideas for business growth.
Unlike traditional top-down mentoring, cross-generational mentoring involves pairing a person from one generation with a person from a different generation with the goal of mutual learning and growth.
This form of mentoring can be very useful as having different generations working together can be very challenging for an organisation, due to different behaviours, value sets and even language!
For example, customers need to be able to relate with the employees servicing their requirements. This means employees must have the necessary skills to readily build trust and empathise with the needs of older generations. As many younger employees have had limited face-to-face interaction with older people, this is a skill area they may need to improve
If your organisation doesn't already have a formal mentoring program, consider introducing one.