Starting a new job is exciting for both the employee and the supervisor and it’s a critical transition to get right. The employee is looking forward to learning more about the organization and being successful at a new job and the supervisor is looking forward to welcoming and developing a new team member. Below are some suggestions to assist both the employee and supervisor with such an important transition.
- Name Recognition – A new employee will meet a lot of new people during the first couple of weeks. Following introductions, write down names and a few things that stood out to you about the person you just met.
- Teamwork – Create a list of the people at the project that you would like to learn more about when you meet them, and seek out opportunities to work with them. Ask the question, “What can I do for the project today?” and, “What does my supervisor need from me today?” From heading up a task or simply being supportive of the co-worker who has more than her share on her plate, small gestures can go a long way.
- Training – During training, be sure to learn not just the HOW but also the WHY of each aspect of your work. Take the time to understand your impact on the project, the team, the issue, and beneficiaries. If you need guidance it is okay to ask someone for more information. Demonstrate that you are someone worth investing in by listening and acting on advice received.
- Daily Ritual – Share what you enjoyed from the day with someone outside of work, such as a family member or friend at the end of each day. What inspired you? What challenged you? What made you smile? These conversations help with engagement in the workplace by self-reflecting on what transpired.
- Refresh – Walks outside, at least once a day is a great way to refresh and reflect on daily tasks.
- Buddy System – Select someone from the team to schedule weekly coffee dates with the new employee for the first month. This person can be a peer, direct report, or even from outside the project—Advisory Committee member. This is a great time to not only treat the new employee to a hot beverage but also to spend time understanding what they love about their job and the organization. In addition, if they have any concerns this is a good venue to discuss.
- Celebrate Wins – Publicly praise the work of the new employee and other team members. The praise does not have to be something big. A comment in a meeting or an email to the team are easy forms of recognition.
- Coaching – Ongoing development of the new employee is key to making him or her feel valued. Plan on meeting with the new employee at regular intervals to provide feedback and suggestions for improvement to ensure that the employee is focused on the goals of the project and feels like a valued team member.
The above suggestions can impact relationships and job fulfillment in any position, at any level. Both the employee and the supervisor have a responsibility to make the workplace a supportive environment and working an engaging experience where everyone enjoys coming to work!