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The Secret to a Successful Company Pivot : Workplace Mentoring


The Secret to a Successful Company Pivot : Workplace Mentoring

A bold pivot requires an equally innovative follow-through strategy – workplace mentoring.

With disruption being used with increasing frequency to describe the events of today’s business environment, it’s very likely that your company recently executed an important pivot of some kind. Perhaps your company’s leaders have pledged to equal gender representation, or maybe the firm recently added a new product line through a recent merger. Whatever your pivot, the decision to change direction is the easy part. The harder – and most important – part is the post-decision strategy that breathes life into the pivot, to ensure that the pivot is made manifest every day and in every decision. The post-pivot strategy is your primary defense against the sinking feeling of uh oh… we’ve been here before.

Mentoring is a vital tool in a company’s strategy to sustain a company pivot for a variety of reasons. First, company leadership can ‘seed’ the concepts of the pivot within its workforce by hand-picking its representatives. Employees who are effectively ‘leaning into’ the values and actions of the pivot are invited to serve as mentors, and their mentoring engagement ensures that the pivot is successfully transmitted to their mentees. (Your mentors aren’t necessarily or exclusively your C-suite residents either: reverse mentoring can effectively support an organizational pivot toward a younger workforce.) Companies who don’t actively identify and empower leaders of ‘the new normal’ give tacit credence to backsliders who want to take your workforce back to the 1950s.

You can’t pivot without workplace mentoring

The mentoring dynamic is also particularly valuable in a pivot because the mentorship can be structured as a reciprocal connection. Mentees not only receive reinforcement of the pivot, but they can also provide feedback on how the change is affecting key operations. The mentee brings expertise of their business operations to the partnership; the mentor brings organizational expertise and cultural alignment. Together, the mentee and mentor assess how the pivot affects the business at all levels, determine best practices, and then share their assessment back to company leadership to inform the workforce at large. This front-line feedback loop is a powerful tool for leaders to know that the pivot isn’t just happening on paper – it’s taking shape at all levels of the company.

Reciprocal learning through workplace mentoring

Innovations in mentoring like reciprocal learning are made possible with the introduction of new technology. Technology has dramatically increased the impact of mentoring and nearly eliminated administrative burden. Your brand overlays on your company’s own online mentoring environment, which integrates seamlessly with your company’s website or intranet. Discussion content is customized to deliver the key concepts of your pivot, and presented in chapters to ensure that nothing is left out. Both mentors and mentees can record notes directly into the mentoring platform, which makes custom reporting and evaluation a breeze.

Don’t look back

One of Entrepreneur’s rules for a successful pivot is not to look back. Mentoring will move your  business move forward into its pivot, empower organizational boldness, and engage your team in the process. eMentorConnect’s expertise in leadership development will add considerable value to your mentoring program by embedding your pivot’s tenets into key learning opportunities for your future leaders. Contact eMentorConnect and ask to see a demo of their cloud-based solution today.   

Mark Brodbeck, MSW

Director of Marketing at eMentorConnect. Passionate about people intent on elevating others, and other examples of enlightened self-interest. Frank Sinatra said it best: 'It's one world, pal. We're all neighbors.'