The first crucial step of your new team member’s journey through your business
“A small company depends on great people much more than a big company does.” – Steve Jobs
So! You’re happy that you’ve made a good fist of your hiring. You took your time. You’ve not settled. You’ve hired to your values. You’re happy that you’re bringing the right person through the door.
Now you’re into the ‘Try Out’ phase and the next 90 days are going to tell you whether your new hire is a good fit for you and your team or not. And it all starts with their first day.
First day nightmares
I don’t know if you remember your first day in a new job, maybe you’ve had several; but it can often be memorable for all of the wrong reasons.
You know, the manager forgot that you were starting that day and you were met with,
‘Oh, can you just sit there, the manager’s in a meeting right now’ or,
‘Oh, you’re here. Right. Great. Um, well, nobody’s got time for you at the minute, so if you could just sit at this computer and read through our website’.
Yes really. It happens. Way too often.
Then there are the first days that are so uninspiring, dull and boring, that they make your excited new starter feel that they’ve made the wrong decision, that all of that great stuff they heard at the interview and read in the job ad, was just talk.
Of course your new starter may be working remotely with all the new challenges that brings.
Making a first day memorable is as simple as it’s important. So how do you get it right?
Here’s how – in three simple steps
- Firstly, let the team know that a new team member is joining and on what date and time. Make sure they know their name, what their role is and what you want them to do to make their new team mate feel welcome.
- Make sure that everything they will need to do their job is set up and ready for them – pc or laptop, mobile phone, logins, security pass – that sort of thing. If they’re going to be based in the office, set up their desk – maybe even dress up their desk with flowers or a welcome balloon, to make it special. I’m sure your team will be able to think of some nice touches.
- If they’re going to be working remotely, get anything they need delivered to them in advance as part of a Welcome pack.
- If you’re assigning a ‘buddy’, make sure they are available on the day, and fully briefed on their role.
- Make sure that you, as the business owner have the date and time in your diary and that you’re there to meet the new team member and spend time with them.
- If you can’t be there, take the time to create a simple ‘Welcome’ video that can be shown in your absence, or sent directly to the new starter, to show that you’ve remembered it’s their first day, and that you care.
Of course it’s important to share essential information.
If they’re office based it will be things like where the fire exits are, where to get their lunch, what to do if you’re first person in, and so on.
No matter where they are working, every new team member will need to know what they’re going to be working on for their first week, the time of the daily huddle – how to join it and how to prepare for it – who to go to for help etc.
Share any information they need to navigate week one, but no more. The rest of day 1 will be all about…
You want this person going home thinking,
‘I cannot wait to get started tomorrow!’
- Inspire them with the story of how you started the business, – the challenges you had to overcome, your values and vision for the future
- Tell them how important their role is to future success of the business, and the opportunity they have to grow and develop as part of the team, inspiring them with your plans for them
- Share the values you and your team share, and how you demonstrate those values in the way you work together. Let them know that you hired them because you recognise that they share those values.
- Have one of the team (maybe a ‘buddy’) speak to them about their experience of the business – where they started and their journey so far, to give them another perspective.
- Encourage them to ask any questions they have.
Whatever happens, you want them to go home really happy, ideally buzzing, about their new job. If that means making their first day a half day, then so be it – better to let them go early on day one, than keep them for a whole day and have them going home bored to death or frazzled.
Preparation, Information, Inspiration.
Make that first day memorable for all the right reasons!
Do one thing: Review the structure of your memorable first day, does it need an overhaul?
(If you missed it last week here’s the Right 1st time hiring system (http://bit.ly/2N9XhGQ )
NB Your Hiring System is key to your Team Building System and is step 3 of a 9 step roadmap that we lead our clients along, to build the business-critical systems that will make your business scale-ready, and free you from the day to day of your operation.
To learn more about the 9 steps that will move you from slave to your business to scale-ready, visit: https://www.mariannepage.co.uk/chaos-to-consistency.html