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Five Tips for Starting new staff

2012 is here, and hopefully you’ve got big plans to grow your business - I know I have! One of the most common issues I notice working with growing businesses is there seems to be no process in place for on-boarding new staff. I can help you put in place some simple, effective processes that really make a difference to how fast your team ramps up.

Introduce them to your most senior managers

Introducing a new employee to senior leaders early on should be a priority. Senior leaders should be aware that someone new is starting - and make an effort to introduce themselves. Even a brief introduction shows workers it’s not just their manager, but the organisation that cares about them.

Don’t be lazy: don’t delegate those introductions…

A new employee’s immediate manager or supervisor should be the one who welcomes them and shows them around when they arrive on day one. It is easy for a busy manager to think, “OK, I’ll shoot them off to the centralised induction and then I can get on with doing the job that I’m meant to be doing,” But welcoming a new worker is not a task that should be rushed or delegated. In fact, those first weeks and months are the time when the manager needs to focus the most time on their new employee. It’s going to be more pain and stress for the manager during that time, but the investment that they make will pay off in enhancing attachment, reducing the risk of attrition and increasing discretionary effort and performance. Let them settle into their space A basic physical orientation, including knowing where bathrooms and lunch rooms are, is another day-one must, but after that, give them some personal space. That could mean a locker… it could be a desk, it could be a room, but they need to have ownership of some personal space from day one. Otherwise what you have is someone who feels displaced, so they don’t actually feel like they’ve got a base to go back to, or somewhere to store some personal effects. Make it safe A new employee’s ability to get in and out of the building “under their own steam” - without having to rely on someone else - is also vital. And personal safety is one of those deal breakers. If the perception is that my organisation doesn’t care about personal safety, then that really starts to erode that perception of trust and security. However, employers often tend to think, we’ll get to that" because it is covered in a centralised induction (or in a handbook somewhere buried in another room). It’s vital to do those things up front.

Get them contributing early

From day one an individual needs to feel that they are a contributing member of the new social structure. A new employee should not be lumped with the jobs nobody else wants just because they are new. Make sure that they can clearly see the job they were hired to do - how they fit in, and how they are going to make a difference.

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