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Posted 17.01.22

Young people aren’t the only ones who can benefit from gaining new knowledge, life skills and formidable insight – individuals of all ages can, and should, take advantage. Cordant People’s reverse mentoring programme, pairs knowledge-hungry individuals, with talent of all ages, who share insider information, advice and tips on topics such as; sales, social media, account development, mental health support and more.

Like most good companies Cordant People has always offered a mentoring scheme where traditionally older, more experienced members of staff work with younger employees, to share their wisdom, however, young people aren’t the only ones who can benefit from learning.

More recently Cordant People have encouraged company-wide knowledge sharing to improve employee engagement and retention and support our coaching and personal development culture. The list of topics includes social media, digital marketing, Google apps, LinkedIn, digital networking, technology and apps and job boards/candidate attraction. We have then undertaken a similar process with the more junior members.

Jamie Reynolds, CEO of Cordant, commented:

“I first came across the concept of reverse mentoring when I was working in the US where it has been around for some time but had been slow to gain momentum. Credit for the practice often goes to retired General Electric CEO Jack Welch, who allegedly returned from an overseas trip in 1999 and ordered his top leaders to find a junior-level mentor to teach them computer skills.

“My personal reasons for wanting to explore reverse mentoring were quite simple. The world was changing, social media and virtual interactions were becoming increasingly popular, and in a blink, there was a switch in the art of communication.

“It isn’t that my senior team and I weren’t using technology – of course we were – but the fact is that millennials were born with the Internet at their fingertips – they have literally grown up with it and communicating digitally comes naturally to them. For the members of the Cordant leadership teams, our connection to the millennial generation is largely through parenting, yet ‘Gen-Y’ are increasingly the people we need to influence, sell to and employ, so understanding them is key for future success.

“In addition to sharing skills, having more exposure to the senior team has helped junior professionals to build their confidence. There is now a strong feeling that their voices are being heard and that they are really contributing to the success of the business. As a result of some of the sessions, we are re-evaluating how our middle management communicates within the organisation and looking at ways to empower junior staff to speak up.

As a business, we believe that there will be a number of benefits in developing strong, collaborative relationships throughout the company. It will help us to identify potential talent for succession planning; enable us to offer a fresh look at technology, process, service and customer relationships; develop skills that directly impact business results; and ensure that as a team we have the finger on the pulse of the latest tools, technologies and trends.

Believing that every day is a school day, Jamie provides environments of encouragement. In his own words: “The wonderful opportunities that have been presented to me, come from someone taking a chance on me when I was young. I am proud, privileged and grateful to those who have mentored, encouraged and supported me – shaping my career and impacting my life. I now make it my personal mission, no matter the way, shape or form, to influence others how I can”.

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