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How Baird Learns From Millennials on Staff

February 14, 2019, 12:00 PM UTC

Next stop: Presentations via Instagram Live? Financial services firm Baird (No. 16) has recognized the generational shift that all businesses face over the next decade and is experimenting with a new way of engaging with the roughly 30% of its workforce who qualify as millennials.

CEO Steve Booth approached the talent development team in 2017 with a request: Connect boomer-age leadership with the younger generation at the firm. Within months, a group of 10 senior leaders had been paired with junior counterparts for a reverse-mentoring program. The millennials drive the conversation on everything from debunking generational stereotypes to developing millennial-conscious business strategy and building relationships with next-gen clients.

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“[My mentee] Bill asked what keeps millennials like myself at a company like Baird,” says Zach Arndt, a branch administrative manager who mentored Bill Mahler, Baird’s chairman of equity capital markets . “My answer was simple—it’s engagements like this.”

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Fortune.