Retaining the New Employee

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Retaining the New Employee
Copyright (c) 2008 Pat Brill

Keeping your talent is one of your main responsibilities as a manager…you are measured by your ability to handle this important function within the company. Losing people doesn’t have to be inevitable even for positions that traditionally have large turnover.

This is such a broad subject because each person has different needs within the work environment. So how do you as their manager satisfy all those needs in order to meet your business objectives?

I hope you have followed strong recruiting methods and have located the right talent for the job. Now you want to incorporate your new team member quickly and most efficiently.

Here are some guidelines to help you create a strong working relationship with your new hire.

All Employees Need:

  • Respectful work environment – treated fairly
  • Tools to do their job –Strong manager who creates high standards and gives clear directions
  • Fair market pay
  • Opportunities for learning and performing, and
  • A big one….recognition

How to Build a Strong Working Relationship with Your New Hire

This is your prime time…time to make the best impression you can on your new employee. The first 45 days are critical to the overall success of you as their manager and their performance within your team. It’s not to say you can’t change an employee’s perception or performance, though setting up the foundation correctly makes your life so much easier. Don’t you have enough challenges?

Having said that…here are some ideas you may want to use when integrating a new employees.

  • Before the new hire starts, send them the policies and procedures manual that your company has…if not, create a document that you can give to your new hire. Why?
  • The new hire has no surprises on the new day. –The new hire feels already connected with you and your company…they have invested time reading the material. –They have received an impression that this is a well run organization.
  • If your company has a new hire orientation, follow it…and add some specifics that work for your department.
  • Early intervention works all the time…schedule daily or weekly meetings to insure that the talents and experience of the individual matches up correctly with their responsibilities. If you see any weak connections, it’s a good time to bridge the gaps.
  • Buddy: Select a seasoned member on your team to be their buddy for the first few weeks. The buddy will help you quickly integrate the new employee into the department.
  • They will: Introduce the new hire to everyone on the team, show them where the basics are like the copier, bathrooms, kitchen, etc., be their “go to” person for most of the every day operations within the department, take the new employee out to lunch on their first day.
  • They can email the person before they start, letting them know they are their buddy and are looking forward to working with them. First impressions have lasting results with new employees.

Some warm and fuzzy ideas:

  • Create a new hire board: Put up a picture of the new employee and their role within the company.
  • Have a 4:30 gathering, bringing together your whole team. Have each person introducing himself or herself to the new person and share a fun fact about themselves. The new person also shares something about themselves
  • Come up with your own ideas that work within your department
  • On the new employee’s first day, during your initial meeting, schedule a meeting 45 days out as a follow up. This meeting is an important time to check in with the new employee to see how they are doing, what their perceptions are about the company and their role, how satisfied are they in their job, and what do they need.

Give them some basic questions ahead of time to prepare themselves for the meeting. Scheduling the 45-day follow up meeting on the first day tells them that you are serious that they be satisfied in their role within the company. Strong and talented employees will perform because they can. They also want to know that your first priority is to build a strong working relationship with them. If you satisfy this requirement with all of your employees, you will build a strong team. Some questions for them to think about:

  • How do you like your job? What do you like most about it? Least?
  • How are your relationships with the other members of the team?
  • Are you working the hours you expected to work? –How can I support you better in your role? –Did you make the right decision about taking the job?
  • If there is a problem for you, come prepared with some potential solutions. They may be new but still have appropriate solutions to their issues. This 45-day following up meeting is a perfect time to brainstorm solutions.

Set the foundation of “respect” in your interactions with everyone on your team…as it is the key to building a strong working relationship.

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About the Author

Pat Brill is the author of the blog “Managing Employees” http://www.ManagingEmployees.net . You can reach her at pat@managingemployees.net.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

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