Before a new person is hired and walks in the door of an organization, many steps and much time has typically elapsed from when the need for the position was determined. If the new person is filling a position that’s been vacant awhile, there is even more need as people are waiting for decisions and things might be falling through the cracks. In any case, at least the vacant position’s upper level supervisor is eager to unload some of the assumed responsibilities and get back to their own position’s work.
Welcome the New ‘Guy’
Being able to welcome the new employee and integrating them quickly into their role so they function well with the remainder of the staff they work with is essential. Imagine a new employee showing up and not even knowing where the restroom is, what protocols they need to follow, and what an appropriate output should be.
Don’t assume, even though the new employee may have performed a similar function at their former position, they’ll know what they need to do. A new person needs a mentor, guide, and coach. If there are meetings they are expected to attend, forms they need to complete, and procedures they must follow, they should be told. Assigning someone who can answer questions and is not resentful about being given the assignment is very important.
Day 2: The Employee Looks Like a Deer Caught in the Headlights
After a day of trying to get acclimated, the new employee is swamped. Even a talented person can be on overload. If the new employee also senses hostility from their cohorts, they may regret accepting the position.
An astute supervisor should step in and discuss – privately – with the new person what the procedures, schedules, and hierarchy are. The supervisor should be available to answer questions. Explain something about the corporate culture. Talk about why Janie is stopping by to ask about the forms the newbie hasn’t completed. The new hire needs to know what is expected so they can perform well.
If intake routines have not been solidified so a new hire knows what to expect, these procedures need to be part of a “Policies and Procedure Manual.” Maybe the new hire is actually the one to create that manual, but they wouldn’t be able to succeed at that task if no one will clue them in on how to do their job effectively.
And, They Walk …
Yes, the new hire decided this isn’t the position for him. He prepares an eloquent, short, letter indicating that it just “isn’t working out.” He leaves the letter on the supervisor’s desk when he comes in early to retrieve his few personal items.
Now you must go through the hiring process all over again. Or maybe you can try another approach.
You consider finding a contractor to do the work. Or you consider contacting a company that has a roster of personnel with specific skills that can step in on a short term or indefinite basis. Just telling someone what you need and where to get answers would be such a relief, wouldn’t it?
Just finding someone with the skills and winding them up, like the bunny that keeps running forever, and goes and goes and goes, would be terrific.
You can dream, right?
Wake Up and Make It Happen
There are companies where nothing has been set up right or at all. Somehow, the company manages to function because that’s “how they’ve always done it.” A company that sets up policies and procedures where they are codified for all to see is important for morale and productivity.
Start from the beginning. Examine the reason the company exists in the first place. Evaluate how you will ensure that employees have a safe, discrimination-free workplace where they are properly trained for their position and treated fairly.
Finding objective third parties to set the wheels in motion to create the plan, procedures, and policies could bring a company to a more successful, productive working environment.
If the company you run or work for is more like the examples described above, do something! A PEO, Professional Employer Organization, might be the right approach to put your company on the path to successful employee retention – and productivity.