Your Onboarding Process Isn’t Enough

We partnered with a global company to deliver a multi-layered program that would address their need for a new and effective talent management strategy. You may be sitting in the same position right now, where you have an influx of new employees while people are leaving. So within your talent management strategy, the first component, when you have a new employee coming on is your onboarding process.

Now is the perfect time for you to challenge yourselves and re-evaluate your best onboarding practices. What we have found is that this is the time that we need to create personalized onboarding processes. There is no longer bringing a group in and having this “one size fits all” strategy. Certainly can we have a group do an orientation, might we have a group go through some training on your systems and tools?

Absolutely – but we cannot be remiss about addressing the individual and what their needs are.

Last week, I talked about leading with humanity; that each person comes into your environment with their own thoughts, feelings, and experiences. So you as a leader, it’s your responsibility that in addition to the mass approach, you’re also pulling the individual aside and creating a personalized onboarding process for them. I’m going to give you three questions that you as a leader should be asking when you have a new employee joining your team.

Number one is, “Tell me what your future vision looks like.” This is not about, what job title do you want next, what exact department do you want? Open the conversation to have them share with you what their strengths are, where they see themselves being utilized. If they see themselves in an office or working remote, if they see themselves collaborating or working independently.

Get a sense of the bigger picture of where they want to go in the future, so that you can then create the plan for them moving ahead. Number two, you need to ask what motivates them.

We want to inspire frequently, motivate occasionally.

But during the times when you do need to motivate, you need to understand how the individual wants to be motivated. Each of us are pushed by certain things, and most often different things. Don’t assume that every single one of your direct reports is motivated by the same thing.

One person may be motivated by a bonus, another person may be motivated by time off, yet another person may be motivated by flexibility. So ask each person as they’re coming onboard, or quite frankly now is your opportunity to ask even your current existing team members, what motivates them. And then finally, number three, ask them, “What are you interested in learning most right now?”

I love asking this question. First of all, it puts the onus on them to decide what they should be learning, what excites them. Then you as their leader can support them in coming up with the game plan to get them there. Which the game plan doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re offering all of the training, but it puts that responsibility on them to be thinking, “Hey, I should be learning something new. What is that?”

Then co-create, collaborate together on building that plan and stay close with them as they are going through that learning and development. Again, perfect time for you to be re-evaluating your onboarding process! If you have several new employees coming in during this time of reshuffling, and really taking the opportunity to create a personalized approach to your onboarding process. Now is the time, get started!

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