Over the years I have had the pleasure of mentoring executives and senior managers. On one occasion I was mentored myself. I have also spoken to many mentors and mentees (is that the right term?) in my years of consulting.
In almost every case the mentor was older. He/she was the sage, the oracle, the custodian of wisdom, and, by and large, did a very good job in guiding, advising, counseling and sometimes even coaching. There is nothing wrong with that practice, indeed it is to be encouraged.
What I am referring to in the title above (a hypothetical case by the way!), is the need to also engage in reverse mentoring, i.e. get a mentor who is (considerably??) younger than you. How else can you stay connected to generation Y? They may well be your customers both present and/or future.
There is considerable learning to be had from this, and please do avoid saying the following:
“In my day” “When I was your age” “When I first started out”
These are guaranteed passion killers; nostalgia doesn’t sit well with generation Y, so don’t go there.