Formal mentorship programs connect baby boomers, gen-Y employees

Xerox initiative engages different generations, gains momentum across divisions
By Giselle Kovary and Adwoa Buahene
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 03/27/2012

In an era where employees are expected to produce more with less, organizations are looking for innovative ways to transfer knowledge, engage employees and support a high-performing work environment. Formal mentoring programs are becoming increasingly popular as one way of connecting experienced baby boomers with younger, less-experienced gen Ys in order to build a learning organization.

In its most basic form, mentoring is a trusted relationship between a successful professional who works with another professional who seeks to grow and advance his professional and personal skill sets.

Mentoring can take several forms — formal, informal, reverse — and each has its own advantages and challenges. Formal mentoring programs are important because they demonstrate organizations value the development of the younger generation’s skills while acknowledging and harnessing the expertise of experienced employees.