Did you know that research shows that your new team members first day on the job can have a huge impact on what they think about working for you and how long they will stay?
Sadly, a lot of organisations and businesses don't get this right! It seems that if you are lucky you'll get a half assed induction and if you are not, you'll get enough information to scramble your brain by 11am!
It's either a case of too much too soon or not enough.
The first day of work is an experience worth investing in. In fact, let's take it back a step - the weeks leading up to the first day can be equally important to how someone feels on their first day...
Starting a new job involves 3 major transitions at the same time. New people, new environment and a whole lot of new things to learn. Bearing in mind lots of people don't like change, this can be pretty stressful.
Here are some of the things I've heard about 1st days:
- Arrive at work to find your new boss is dealing with an unexpected crisis & no-one else knows what to do with you.
- You arrive to a closed office as everyone forgot you were coming.
- You're told the wrong dress code and get sent home to change (1 hour trip!)
- Taken through a huge checklist of bureaucratic nonsense and told all the things you should and shouldn't do.
- Chucked in at the deep end with your first task as everyone is so busy.
- Eat lunch at your desk as you can't remember how to get to the staff room and struggle to remember anyone's name or role.
- Leave work late as nobody else seems to be leaving on time and you don't want to be seen as 'that person.'
- And let's not forget stroppy bosses, fighting in the office (yes actual fisticuffs!), and getting told they no longer had a job when they arrived!
First days should be one of life's peak moments. Often they aren't!
We all know we have one chance at making a first impression, so make sure it's a good one!
Here are some of the things my clients have done to welcome their new team member:
- Sent flowers or chocolates a few days before.
- Sent a welcome pack with staff photos and a little about each person.
- Sent a handwritten welcome card that everyone in the office has signed.
- Decorated the front of the office or desk with balloons & a welcome banner.
- Organised a staff lunch\afternoon tea or taken them out for lunch.
- Made sure everything and everyone is ready for them (and having a plan B).
- Not overloading them with information on their first day.
- Setting them up with a buddy to help their first few weeks.
What about you? What do you do to make sure your new starters feel special?
Business & management coach, mentor, trainer, author, speaker, social entrepreneur, (and chief pot and bottle washer!)