In contrast to classic mentoring, peer mentoring represents a “buddy system” in which employees at the same level (peers) meet in small groups of 2 to 5 people to exchange ideas. Members of the peer-mentoring group usually do not work together in the same teams or projects but have a similar professional background. Besides having members with similar expertise and responsibilities, the groups should preferably be as diverse as possible. Especially for smaller businesses, holding meetings with an external partner can add extra value.
Members of a peer-mentoring group meet once or twice a month to share information on their project’s progress and provide each other with input and constructive feedback. Participants in peer-mentoring meetings can also use them to rehearse particularly important speeches and presentations. Or, as in the last example, members can ask for independent advice on how to cope with conflicts and challenges.
Peer-mentoring groups offer employees at the same level a valuable opportunity for mutual exchange and support. The regular meetings help members of different diversity groups to develop their potential and use it for innovation. Outside-the-box thinking is promoted, and expertise is constantly communicated and applied. Furthermore, the large number of employees who participate in these programs increases communication between departments within an organization. These interactions open up new possibilities for collaboration, along with new synergies.