If done right, integrating a qualified, new employee into your business unit will pay great dividends. But if done the wrong way, the result can be increased inefficiencies and stress for your entire team. So what's a hiring manager to do? First, put yourself in the place of your new hire. We've all been one at some point in our careers. Be empathetic, sympathetic and downright hospitable.
With that in mind, here are some tips – for the new hire and his manager:
Advice to the new hire
Congratulations! You been offered a position and you've accepted it. Now what? As a hiring manager, I want first to congratulate you. You have a bright future ahead of you, and I'm here to help you. But you must help me, too. Be prepared not only to do the things that you've been trained to do but also those things that others may not want to do. Your willingness to accept challenges, go the extra mile and have a positive attitude is exactly what I need. Ask questions. Be patient. Seek clarification.
Your First Day
Your first day in a new job can be very intimidating. I know. I worked at my previous employer for 18 years. I planned to stay for five. But life happened. I knew how to get things done and I knew everyone. And I'm sure that you did, too. On my first day at the new job, I met with my supervisor, HR and got to meet the many people that I would be working with. This experience was priceless. You will need to learn new procedures, new accounting structures and rules, new workplace rules and new technologies. Hopefully your hiring manager will be like mine: She took the time to explain things, she didn't hesitate to answer questions and she was always available. She was vested in my success.
Orientation is your opportunity to meet and learn about the organization. Do take a lot of notes because you won't remember the details. Prepare ahead of time for this and come prepared to ask questions. And yes, I, too, will provide you with department-specific orientation. I will give you a checklist to learn about things not only independently but also by meeting with your peers. It's your responsibility to get the most out of this task. And it can be difficult to balance orientation and work, but you can do it!
As your hiring manager, I will appoint a peer mentor from another department to help provide you with a positive experience. I do so because I want you to succeed. And I will mentor you, too, by helping you to understand how to do your job, work through others and get the work done.
Ongoing training and development
Lastly, do as I do: Participate in ongoing training and development by participating in formal and informal opportunities. And you will learn. It takes work to balance work, family and school. But, as I tell my kids, it builds character.
JoAnn Klinedinst is vice president of professional development for HIMSS.