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Feb 9, 2024

Mentoring Is Key for Hybrid Teams and Underrepresented Groups

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Mentoring vital for hybrids & underrepresented

Have you ever considered how the seismic shift towards decentralized work is reshaping the landscape for underrepresented groups? In a candid conversation with Dave Wilkin, CEO of, we delved into the heart of this transformation. The emergence of remote work paradigms has not only boosted efficiency and work-life balance but also unveiled critical challenges, particularly for women and BIPOC communities. This shift, while bringing forth balance and flexibility, paradoxically magnifies proximity bias and disrupts natural workplace connections, potentially sidelining those from underrepresented groups from crucial leadership exposure.

Technology as a Bridge: Overcoming Proximity Bias

The solution to this conundrum, as Wilkin points out, lies in leveraging technology to create proximity and connections beyond physical spaces. Shockingly, 60% of visible minority women lack informal connections with leaders, a significant concern given that 85% of career opportunities stem from such interactions. Here, technology serves as a great equalizer, dismantling biases and fostering connections that are not contingent on physical presence. Wilkin's insights underscore the necessity for leaders to harness technology not just for operational efficiency but as a pivotal tool in nurturing a more inclusive and connected workforce.

In addressing these challenges, mentoring and sponsorship programs emerge as key strategies. However, the intent behind these initiatives often falls short in execution, marred by reliance on rudimentary tools like spreadsheets or the subjective judgments of HR managers. Wilkin advocates for a technology-driven approach to mentoring, where platforms like can amplify reach, enhance outcomes, and provide valuable data insights. These platforms are not merely tools for connectivity; they are instruments of change, fostering inclusion and engagement across diverse groups.

A Game-Changer in Corporate Mentoring stands out as a pioneering platform, combining smart matching technology with a learning framework to facilitate various programs like mentoring, onboarding buddies, and networking. What makes revolutionary is its ability to automate and tailor these connections, providing leaders with a transparent view of the program's impact on retention, engagement, and inclusion. By systematically measuring the outcomes, offers a real-time glimpse into the effectiveness of these connections, a significant advancement from the traditional, opaque approach to mentoring and sponsorship programs.

The impact of mentoring extends beyond the mentees to the mentors themselves, fostering a culture of learning and growth. Through platforms like, organizations witness enhanced belonging, skill development, and career progression. The platform's ability to provide insights into who is benefitting from these programs, and how, is pivotal. It is not just about tracking promotions but understanding the immediate, tangible impacts of mentoring on the individuals and the organization's culture.

Transformative Outcomes from Hybrid Mentoring Programs

What Wilkin had to say really resonated with me. The adoption of hybrid mentoring programs, as seen with my consulting clients, has resulted in profoundly positive outcomes. These organizations, by embracing a blend of traditional and technology-driven mentoring approaches, have noticed remarkable improvements in employee satisfaction, diversity inclusion, and overall team dynamics. 

These programs have bridged geographical divides, allowed for more personalized and effective mentorship, and resulted in higher engagement levels among both mentors and mentees. This success story is a testament to the transformative power of well-structured, technology-supported hybrid mentoring programs in today's work environment.

A Call to Action: Embracing Technology in the New Work Era

As we navigate economic headwinds and the push for more inclusive workplaces, the integration of technology in talent management and remote work becomes paramount. Wilkin's parting thoughts implore leaders to think strategically about how technology, particularly in the realms of mentoring and networking, can be a cost-effective and impactful way to achieve their diversity, equity, inclusion, and cultural goals. The era of flying teams to centralized locations for meetings is giving way to a more efficient, inclusive, and technologically driven approach.

The transition to a decentralized work model poses unique challenges and opportunities, especially for underrepresented groups. The integration of technology in mentoring and sponsorship programs, as advocated by Dave Wilkin and demonstrated through platforms like, emerges as a crucial strategy in this new work landscape. By fostering connections, breaking down biases, and enabling systematic measurement of outcomes, technology serves as a powerful ally in building a more inclusive, engaged, and productive workforce.

Key Take-Away

Remote work boosts efficiency but magnifies proximity bias, posing challenges for underrepresented groups..>Click to tweet

Image credit: Andrea Piacquadio

Originally published in Disaster Avoidance Experts on December 16, 2023

Dr. Gleb Tsipursky was lauded as “Office Whisperer” and “Hybrid Expert” by The New York Times for helping leaders use hybrid work to improve retention and productivity while cutting costs. He serves as the CEO of the boutique future-of-work consultancy Disaster Avoidance Experts. Dr. Gleb wrote the first book on returning to the office and leading hybrid teams after the pandemic, his best-seller Returning to the Office and Leading Hybrid and Remote Teams: A Manual on Benchmarking to Best Practices for Competitive Advantage (Intentional Insights, 2021). He authored seven books in total, and is best know for his global bestseller, Never Go With Your Gut: How Pioneering Leaders Make the Best Decisions and Avoid Business Disasters (Career Press, 2019). His cutting-edge thought leadership was featured in over 650 articles and 550 interviews in Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, USA Today, CBS News, Fox News, Time, Business Insider, Fortune, and elsewhere. His writing was translated into Chinese, Korean, German, Russian, Polish, Spanish, French, and other languages. His expertise comes from over 20 years of consulting, coaching, and speaking and training for Fortune 500 companies from Aflac to Xerox. It also comes from over 15 years in academia as a behavioral scientist, with 8 years as a lecturer at UNC-Chapel Hill and 7 years as a professor at Ohio State. A proud Ukrainian American, Dr. Gleb lives in Columbus, Ohio. In his free time, he makes sure to spend abundant quality time with his wife to avoid his personal life turning into a disaster. Contact him at Gleb[at]DisasterAvoidanceExperts[dot]com, follow him on LinkedIn @dr-gleb-tsipursky, Twitter @gleb_tsipursky, Instagram @dr_gleb_tsipursky, Facebook @DrGlebTsipursky, Medium @dr_gleb_tsipursky, YouTube, and RSS, and get a free copy of the Assessment on Dangerous Judgment Errors in the Workplace by signing up for the free Wise Decision Maker Course at


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