About Kelly and Robby Riggs
Kelly Riggs and Robby Riggs both have successful careers as entrepreneurs -- Kelly as an author, speaker, and recognized thought leader in the fields of sales strategy and leadership development, and Robby as a transformation/change specialist working primarily with Fortune 500 companies.
What makes us unique is that we have, as father and son, have enjoyed a business countermentoring relationship for many years, learning from each other's experiences and exploiting the knowledge base unique to each of us. Kelly has been asked to speak and consult on generational issues in the workplace for many years. His 2008 book, 1-on-1 Management: What Every Great Manager Knows That You Don't, outlines a leadership style that is particularly effective with younger generations.
More importantly, one of the early consulting engagements for Robby resulted in a long-lasting and effective countermentoring relationship with the CIO of a Fortune 500 company. His experiences there have proven to be very instructive in understanding the challenges that the older generation faces in dealing with the younger generation in the workplace.
Together, our objective is to explore the best of both generations while discussing the pros AND cons of two completely different perspectives of the workplace.
The Evolution of CounterMentors™
For the first time in history, the younger generation has something of significance to offer the older generation. In the past, a new employee was required to “pay his dues,” and promotion and advancement were dependent upon years of service and “working her way up the corporate ladder.”
Then, digital technology and social media exploded onto the workplace. And suddenly, the younger generation had something to offer to a company, something HUGE – a vast knowledge of, and practical experience with, the rapidly evolving landscape of social media and digital tools. As technology and this new iGeneration infected the workplace, the value of innovative, tech-savvy, so-called “junior” employees increased a hundredfold.
Unfortunately, most companies – mostly led by old-school Baby Boomers – have tenaciously clung to the old-world order of “wait your turn” and “because I said so.” The reasons are as varied as the companies: Self-preservation. Fear of change. Arrogance. The comfort of “that’s the way we’ve always done it.”
But corporate leaders that fail to adapt and learn from the “younger” generation face the reality of becoming irrelevant. Not tomorrow – today. In the 1950s, the lifespan of a Fortune 500 company was 70 years. Today, it’s 15 years and shrinking rapidly. Today’s #Leader must adapt, and any model of leadership that doesn’t embrace intentional inclusion and collaboration with the younger generation (today's Millennials and Digital Natives) is, ultimately, a death sentence.
The CounterMentor is the new leader. He or she is the leader that taps into the wealth of knowledge available from the younger generations and "grow from below," while simultaneously coaching and mentoring those same players.
We call it "Hyper-Connected Leadership."
These "new leaders" have learned how to use every resource available, taking the best of the wisdom and experience of the “older” generation and mixing it with the innovation and technology savvy of the “newer” generation, to overcome the complexity and distractions of the current workplace.