The world of lockdown has thrown up huge challenges to employers over how do they integrate and best the best out of new hires.
Whilst many companies have mentoring schemes in place, these are not designed for the purpose of immersing individuals in the companies’ culture or intended to be on the job training. For the more experienced the problem is based around integrating with a new team and understanding the culture, which is made more difficult when this only happens via Teams, Zoom or the like, as this leaves little opportunity for the small talk which happens naturally in the office and the gradual getting to know you. Even worse for the young and inexperienced, who have greater challenges in learning the work, integrating with the team and absorbing the culture. Many organisations we are working with and have been speaking too have instigated regular team calls to try and help these new joiners but admit these are partially effective. Of course, lockdown has created an extreme situation, which is likely to recede in the coming months. However, many employers expect to have their workforce continue to work flexibly moving towards a hybrid model, which means some of the issues currently seen have the potential to continue, if not managed.
The 5-step framework:
Create a formal mentoring scheme for your organisation. The aim to be development of the individual over the long term. Where possible the mentee to be given access to different mentors over time (perhaps a change every 12-24 months)
Create a network of people that the new joiner can tap into. They do not need to be senior but are rather intended to help the new joiner navigate.
This can be based upon a wide range of topic from “Induction”, job training, processes, escalation etc… This should be accompanied by a form of assessment so that progress can be monitored.
Beyond annual objective setting for developing new staff objectives of a shorter sprint style should be used for development (achievable within weeks). Again, progress should be assessed.
This can be achieved through a number of means and the effort should reflect the importance of culture to the individual organisation. Some methods being Social events, Speed dating (short meet ups), cultural guides and mentoring. A combination can and likely should be used.
At Holistica, we have developed a five steps framework to help employers with this topic. Please contact us if you would like to discuss more on this topic.