Traditional Mentoring vs Modern Mentoring

January 16, 2019

When you hear the word “mentoring,” what comes to mind? Most people think of a one-on-one interaction with a senior level individual teaching a junior level individual without the use of technology. If this is the case, you’re thinking of traditional mentoring.

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As the workforce continues to become more diverse, traditional mentoring is evolving. Individuals are continuing to learn new skills and receive guidance, but this is being done using new perspectives and technology. These changes have led to organizations considering more modern types of mentoring.

Traditional mentoring and modern mentoring have the same goals, but they promote different ways to reach those goals. It’s important to understand the benefits of each when identifying the needs of the organization and its individuals.

Here are some benefits of both types of mentoring and some of their similarities:

Why Traditional Mentoring?

Although newer forms of mentoring are becoming popular, traditional mentoring is still a valuable tool for career development. It is one-on-one and face-to-face, which is ideal if the mentee wants to improve their interpersonal skills. Traditional mentoring…

  • Improves the individual’s level of success because the mentor can give their mentee uninterrupted attention
  • Has fewer distractions when technology isn’t involved
  • Promotes higher accountability, as individuals are more responsible when there are less obstacles between themselves and their mentor

Why Modern Mentoring?

There are many types of modern mentoring. Virtual, speed, and flash mentoring are just a few, and they all have their own purpose. Modern mentoring is useful if your organization is global or many of the individuals are millennials. Here are a few benefits of modern mentoring: 

  • More individuals are able to participant in the mentoring program, especially when virtual and group mentoring are implemented.
  • Modern mentoring types like flash mentoring focus on teaching an individual hard skills.
  • Networking opportunities outside of the organization are possible after a round of speed mentoring.

What Do They Have in Common?

Traditional and modern mentoring both encourage individuals to develop their career, so we recommend giving them both a try. Start with traditional mentoring, as individuals can get a feel of what a relationship has in store. After identifying the needs of the organization and its individuals, implement modern mentoring accordingly. Here are some benefits of both types of mentoring: 

  • Can be tailored to the mentee’s needs
  • Provides a low-stress environment for individuals
  • Introduces individuals to the company culture
  • Shows that the organization cares about its individuals


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