Congratulations! You made it and hired the best candidate for the job. He passed all interviews and tests to finally sit behind a computer, whose purpose is not to search for a job anymore. He dreamed about his first day and probably had panic attacks the night before: "Will he arrive on time?", "Does he have all information necessary?" "Will he enjoy his job?" He is all prepared and may unfortunately be the only one.
Everything was supposed to move smoothly but the computer is not working properly. No one seems to know what to do with the new hire? The team does not make efforts to include him…
After several discussions, I realized that some organizations, departments or teams have no idea on how to welcome new employees. You may think that “welcome to our GREAT company” is enough. Do organizations realize the impact of a bad first day or week on employee engagement?
When a new employee realizes that the organization has nothing planned for him, he starts his journey with a bitter taste. He may feel unsafe, not meaningful and will therefore not be available for the work you hired him for. This is the road to disengagement and it started on the Day 1.
It is the organization's role to welcome the new employee. For sure, he has to make some effort to integrate himself but coming in a new team can be intimidating. This is where a good welcome strategy helps both the organization and the new employee to create a good relationship.
Fortunately, there are strategies to welcome new employees and improve their adaptation to the new environment. Here are five suggested areas that you may consider developing for your welcome strategy.
Those suggestions should be amended to your organization’s culture. Do not use Check-Lists if your team never uses them. Make sure to use tools and strategies that do not deviate from what you are used to. It will be easier then to prepare the Welcome Day of your new hire.
Most of the time, the organizations’ Welcome Strategy does not cover all of the 5 suggested areas above. You should then consider the impact of this on the new employee's moral. He may be perplexed because he knows that he is welcomed but feels that something is missing.
Finally, the idea is to make the first days and weeks as pleasant as possible for the new employee. When building the welcoming strategy try to imagine what questions a new employee may have or the ones you had as a new employee. Your goal will be to help him through the adaptation phase. An employee that feels welcomed will be more inclined to go the extra mile for the organization.
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