Friday, April 20, 2012

What Am I Doing Here? Orientation and Training

 So you’ve hired your new employee and they show up on the first day.  That’s a good start, but will it be their most productive day at work?  Maybe it won’t be. Will it be the day that you decide if this person is going to fit at your business?  This is also not likely. 

However, that first day and the days that follow will be the most crucial time period for the new employee in terms of learning what’s expected, what they are supposed to do, how your business operates and where they fit into the larger picture. 

In making this transition a smooth and efficient process you should provide a company overview, your policies and job descriptions. This can all be told to a new employee but it’s a lot to take in so an orientation package that explains all the important aspects of your business, their job and what is expected of an employee will speed the process up. Included with this orientation package should be what is expected of them and what happens when they choose to deviate from these expectations.  This is so they can avoid any unnecessary behaviours or actions. This type of orientation is an important way to avoid misunderstandings that could cause future problems and creates a smoother transition for all parties involved. 

Training is the next important step and how this is done will vary from one workplace to another but simply expecting a new employee will do things right and in the way that your business normally does them is unrealistic. 

New employees often come into a workplace with either little or no experience in exactly the job that you have them doing.  Perhaps,  the experience they do have gave them different habits or ways of thinking than would normally be expected at your business. 

Training has to be gradual and conducted in more than one way to best deliver your message.  Be sure to take into account that some people will learn better through different methods or at a different pace. Be thorough, expect bumps in the road and make sure you ask for feedback so you know how your employee is adjusting and where they need more help.

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