Five essential steps to help a new starter get started

As you know, I’m passionate about helping you to make employees, teams and organizations great by to retaining, creating and hiring top talent.

One key component of this is how you ensure new starters (hopefully A-players) hit the ground running.

So I’m really pleased to feature this guest post by Sat Sindhar, Managing Director of Human Resources Software company People HR.

Enjoy! — Alexis

Do your new starters race ahead on day one? Or do they sit back for the first few weeks, adjusting to their new environment and learning the ins and outs of their new job?

There’s nothing inherently wrong with taking a while to settle in… but wouldn’t it be nice if we could speed up that process, if only just a little?

Each new starter is different. But if you follow the five steps below with each of your new starters, you should find an overall improvement in terms of the time it takes them to start doing their ‘thing’.

Step One: Try Before You Buy

Before you even make your first hire, you should – if you’re able – offer candidates the chance to spend a day, or even a couple of hours, in the job role they’re applying for.

Not only does this help you to assess their abilities beyond the black and white of their resume, but it also helps them to get a feel for the job they’re applying for before they actually start.

You shouldn’t base your hiring decision on this trial run alone, of course – but you can certainly use it as a piece of evidence, along with any other work samples you’ve requested, or interviews you’ve conducted.

Step Two: List Their Responsibilities

On a new starter’s very first day, you should make sure they receive a task list / list of responsibilities, which covers all the goals you expect them to accomplish within their first three months.

This can really help your new starter’s confidence by giving them a clear set of objectives to work towards, and it’s a great way to make sure they’re doing the right thing from day one!

You might even consider offering a reward or bonus once this initial set of tasks/goals has been completed.

Step Three: Pair Them Up 

A common issue for new starters is feeling lost, lonely and socially awkward in their new environment. A great way to combat this is to provide each new starter with a designated ‘buddy’, who will ideally be working in a similar function, and who will ideally have a lot of experience within your company.

This not only gives your new starter a place to turn to for advice with their job role, but it also provides them with a bit of social support and a feeling of acceptance. Over time, they will forge their own relationships, but it certainly helps to have the support of a friendly face to take you through your first few weeks.

Step Four: Orchestrate An Achievement

One thing that can really help your new starter to grow their confidence and trust their own initiative, is to set them a task that can be completed quickly, and that you know they can achieve.

Giving your new starter a ‘quick win’ like this is a great way to reinforce a positive, ‘can-do’ mental attitude, and it will lead to more ‘real wins’ for your company in the future.

Don’t make the task too simple though – choose something that will actually challenge their skills a little, and something that relates to the job role you hired them for!

Step Five: Say Thanks!

If there’s one thing new starters need, it is regular recognition, and confirmation that they’re doing their job correctly.

In fact, research from Harvard Business School found that productivity increased by around 50% when a CEO visited each of his workers to personally thank them for a job well done – so don’t be shy to check-in on your new starter at the end of each day to say “great job today – keep it up” – you’ll be surprised how much it helps.

Sat Sindhar is passionate about helping HR professionals make big impact within their organisation, and he loves to help business owners understand the true value of their workforce.

His company, People HR, provides small and medium businesses with essential HR admin tools – such as a central employee database and smart holiday planner – plus it includes a range of exclusive extras that help ambitious HR professionals to deliver relevant, noticeable results for their company. Liked this guest post? Read their blog , watch their videos or follow them on Twitter.

About The Author

Alexis Kingsbury

Alexis is founder of the Parentpreneur Accelerator and Making Greatness Ltd. He is a serial entrepreneur, with experience creating start-ups in a variety of areas, particularly in SaaS and EdTech. He is also a lucky husband and proud dad, and now helps other 'parentpreneurs' like him to achieve their dreams of having successful businesses, making a difference in the world, and spending time with the people they love.

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