YOUR NEW MENTOR? THE INTERN
Young coworkers can teach you new skills
Elders once dispensed knowledge to young minds,
but now millennials are doing the counseling—and
they could boost your career. “Reverse mentoring”
ranges from casual chats to formal programs, says
Meagan Johnson, workplace consultant and coauthor
of Generations, Inc. Companies like The Hartford and
HP help older mentees get pointers on everything from
thriving in teams (millennials are the “everyone-gets-
a-trophy” generation, so they’re often team players)
to social media (forget Facebook; you need to be
on LinkedIn). “You can’t be closed-minded and say,
‘There’s nothing you can teach me,’ or you’ll stagnate,”
says Ellen Harte, 57, an event planner in Chicago. But
younger staffers can still learn from you. Harte’s teen
coworker once said he preferred half an hour of texting to a quick phone call. “I
explained that human contact offers the opportunity to see someone’s reactions
or hear the tone of their voice,” Harte says. Now more young coworkers call her or
chat face-to-face. Wait—no more vexing texts? This really is worth trying! —L. D.
RAISING THE BARRE
This ballet-inspired fitness craze will keep you on your toes
FROM TOP: ILLUSTRATION BY OLIVER MUNDAY; COURTESY OF THE BAR METHOD
If you’ve always
wanted to dance—but
can’t actually dance—
try a barre fitness class.
The workouts improve
and balance: no toe
blend ballet move-
ments, light weights,
Pilates, and deep
the perfect wide-spectrum workout for people over 50, says Pamela
Peeke, M.D., a spokesperson for the American College of Sports Medi-
cine. “Unlike, say, a triathlon, you can modify every barre movement
to your own fitness level,” she explains.
Gyms and rec centers can barely meet the demand. The franchise
Pure Barre added 32 locations in 2011, while The Bar Method
launched its 55th studio in January and expects to open 20 more
this year. Donna Foster, 61, a sales manager in Castle Pines, Colorado,
enrolled after gaining weight. “It changed my body so fast,” she says.
“I expect to still be in class when I’m 80.” —L.D.
SAFER STRE TCHES The exercise barre helps with balance.