Reverse mentoring

Morgan Stanley

The best employers recognise that career development opportunities need to be equally accessible to every employee. These employers acknowledge and actively address the factors that can hinder the career progression of LGB employees.

In July 2011 Morgan Stanley introduced an LGB-specific ‘reverse mentoring’ programme (where junior staff coach senior colleagues), founded on the principle that the best way
to address LGB issues is to build open communication and personal relationships. The LGB employee network Gay and Lesbian Employees at Morgan Stanley (GLEAMS) identified a number of reverse mentors who have been partnered with non-LGB senior managers from their own division. The programme complements Morgan Stanley’s existing ‘LGB Allies’ initiative and is designed to facilitate two-way development and communication for both the manager and the GLEAMS member. The programme’s structure ensures improved awareness of LGB issues among senior members of the firm
and, just as importantly, establishes a senior relationship network for GLEAMS members.

Working with a reverse mentor also increases managers’ understanding of the GLEAMS network and the experience of being an LGB employee at Morgan Stanley. This  increases managers’ ability to support gay employees within their department and ensure that they can be authentic leaders and contributors and succeed in their chosen career paths. By actively promoting the programme to LGB employees and involving senior colleagues from the LGB Ally scheme, Morgan Stanley is laying a foundation both for developing future LGB leaders and for fostering a more thoroughly inclusive work culture.