Reverse mentoring is when a senior leader is mentored by a more junior colleague who - from a diversity and inclusion perspective - is different from them somehow and has a different experience of the organisation as a result.   

 The scheme is an action in our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy and is part of the inclusive leadership and management plan announced in April 2019. This year's scheme will extend to leadership beyond President's Board and Provost's Board, and we will continue to expand our offer as Reverse Mentoring progresses.    

 We welcome expressions of interest from all parts of the College. We are particularly interested to hear from underrepresented groups such as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) staff, LGBTQ+ staff, and disabled staff. 

Important information

If you are applying to be a reverse mentor, it is a pre-requisite to have attended our 'Being a Mentor' session and be registered as a mentor. We, therefore, require you to sign-up for the general scheme via the course web page before applying to be a reverse mentor.
If you are a mentor and have attended the 'Being a Mentor' session, you can 'Apply to be a Reverse Mentor' (Blue button on the right-hand side of this page)


What is reverse mentoring?

Reverse mentoring is confidential, voluntary and informal; it provides a forum for our diverse community to mentor and support the development of our leadership team around diversity issues in the workplace.

It cultivates a relationship where our leadership develops partnerships with people from all backgrounds contributing to a diverse, inclusive future at Imperial.  

Who can be a reverse mentor?

  • Staff at any level who can commit time and have flexibility in their availability 
  • Have attended the mentor briefing or are willing to do so 
  • Participation in the reverse mentoring briefing session 
  • Have experiences or perspectives of working at the College that they are willing to share to support the learning and growth of another 
  • Have no current conflict of interests with the College/senior leadership team 

Benefits for the reverse mentor

  • Offers insight and awareness of senior leadership structures, decision making and the context in which senior leaders are operating  
  • Provides an opportunity for their perspectives and experiences to be heard and valued   
  • Gives increased networking opportunities

Level of commitment

  • A series of one to one conversations every 6-8 weeks, or as agreed by both parties, probably lasting no more than one hour
  • Participation in a group briefing session (1/2 day)  
  • Participation in a group evaluation/learning activity 

Key qualities of a reverse mentor

  • Clear track record of modelling diversity and inclusion 
  • Good understanding of boundaries – personal and role boundaries 
  • Good active listening skills 
  • Able to build rapport 
  • Able to manage power differentials 
  • Able to maintain confidentiality 
  • Able to create a safe space 
  • Able to provide a sounding board for reflection and challenge 
  • Confident and compassionate 

Information/Support Session for Reverse Mentors

The Information/Support Sessions are an opportunity to meet with a member of the Reverse Mentoring team for 45 minutes.

The sessions have been created for either Reverse Mentors or Mentees to book a 1-2-1 meeting to discuss their experience of the scheme, any challenges they might be facing or anything significant they think they should share.

Equally a space for anyone interested in becoming a mentor/mentee to ask questions or find out more.

You can book a session via our booking app.


If you need further information, you can contact: