Learning is a two-way street

Learning is a Two-Way Street

Conventional wisdom suggests that senior leaders should always serve as teachers for less experienced associates, passing along lessons from their years on the job. But at Frito-Lay, we’ve come to learn this isn’t the only way to help our organization grow. We know learning can be a two-way street where the teacher actually becomes the student.

Frito-Lay has a strong culture of mentoring, which enables our associates to benefit from the wisdom and experience of industry-wise veteran team members. We also rely on reverse mentoring, which pairs up experienced team members and tech-savvy, rising talent - encouraging an open exchange of thoughts, ideas and experiences.

When associates are able to share their values, beliefs, preferences and expectations with senior leaders, those leaders gain a fresh perspective on how the work environment must evolve to meet the changing needs of our next-gen workforce. Plus it provides associates with an opportunity to see that their opinions matter and their ideas are truly valued.

In addition, our millennial associates can help senior leaders gain invaluable insights into how younger consumers view emerging technologies, how they work, culture insights and more. And associates of all ages are able to contribute through reverse mentoring, bringing fresh ideas and new thinking to the attention of management.

Reverse mentoring is also an important way Frito-Lay is supporting leadership development for rising talent. Tomorrow’s leaders are being cultivated through this innovative program.

In the final analysis, reverse mentoring is highly beneficial to both the participants and the business. We’ve created an environment where good ideas are valued, no matter where they come from. By pairing up senior leaders with junior-level associates, Frito-Lay is making the most of its most valued resources.

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