Johnson & Johnson: Embracing digital opportunities with reverse mentoring

As part of our work with Johnson and Johnson, they wanted to become a more proficient digital, analytical and learning organisation. In particular they saw a digital capability gap between senior leaders and digital natives (millennials) within the organisation. They asked Brand Learning to help them develop a reverse mentoring scheme that would deepen the leadership team’s understanding of the role of digital and technology in their customers lives.

The concept of reverse mentoring has taken off in recent years, but creating a successful approach takes planning, structure, and competency-building among both mentors and mentees. We developed a framework and resources to ensure that mentors and mentees were supported throughout the journey, including:

Helping match digitally fluent colleagues with leaders (mentors and mentees)

A self-discovery tool with diagnostic questions around the use of social media platforms, ensuring mentee and mentor had a shared view of the starting point

An engagement pack that guided the paired participants on setting personal objectives for what they wanted to get out of the programme and how to get there 

Support for the mentors: virtual briefing to onboard them to the programme, a forum for their questions, advice on directing the flow of the conversation over time with their mentees, and virtual coaching from the Brand Learning team throughout the programme

An immersive learning experience for mentees to increase their personal confidence and competence with key digital channels such as Instagram and Snapchat

The programme delivered a cost effective, empowering and sustainable first step in driving digital acceleration for Johnson and Johnson, with 88% of senior leaders mentored finding the programme a positive and unique professional experience. Their quantitative capability study also reported statistically significant double digit growth in digital capabilities for both junior and senior leaders year on year, thanks to the programme. 

Published with kind permission.

If you would like to learn more about the work we do at Brand Learning, please contact us.


One of the best programmes I have ever done Johnson & Johnson Senior Leader



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