Important Tips to Train New Employees
The thought of training a new employee is likely to fill your mind with dread. You’re worried whoever you hired might not be all they promised to be in their interview. It’s impossible to tell whether they’ll flake after two weeks, which means you have to start all over again. Then to top it all off training can be expensive and time-consuming.
What can an employer do?
The reality of training employees is never exciting, but this doesn’t mean shortcuts are advised. It’s important to train every employee as if they’re going to be a rock star for your company. I recently spoke with a friend of mine who's a personal injury lawyer to discuss how he trains new staff, from interns to lawyers with numerous accolades. It doesn’t matter if you’re hiring a high schooler or someone who's been in the business for decades, these tips can help train anyone.
Build Connections First:
Do you remember the first day of college orientation when you felt like you met a thousand people, but you could scarcely remember a name or much less, who was what major? The same thing happens to people on their first day of work. As you’re giving your employee a tour they’re likely to meet a lot of people, which is overwhelming.
Before you introduce them to everyone, create a set of flashcards. The cards should include each employee (with a photo) along with job title and interests. This will help your new employee to remember names easier. If you know that they have a common connection with someone introduce them to create a friendship.
In addition to this, make sure to plan out your new employee's lunches the first week - or at least the first few days. When your employee has to figure out their lunch plans it can often feel like they’re the kid at school no one wants to sit with. Utilize the opportunity to make sure they eat with other employees to get to know them on a more personal level.
Provide Room for Comfort:
New employees will not be as efficient as those who are used to working in your environment. As a result, you should make some allowances to provide extra time to complete tasks early on and to learn things at a comfortable pace. No one likes to be sped through a training routine and feel like they received whiplash halfway through. It’s difficult to remember what you’ve learned and mistakes will become occur more often.
A fun way to help people learn their nuances of their job is through “gamification.” This has been a popular trend of late that turns aspects of their job into a game to help them commit things to memory quicker. This works best if there is some sort of online training. Make them feel accomplished as they move through the program by adding a progress bar or reward points.
Provide All Their Resources:
Starting a new job without all the right resources is a pain. Make sure they know where everything is and they have everything they require. You can use an office cheat sheet for this too. The cheat sheet can tell them where essential tools are in the office (and how to use them) such as the printer, supply cabinet, important offices et cetera. Plus, it makes them feel more comfortable when they have to ask fewer questions.
The brunt of training new employees shouldn’t just be on one person’s shoulders. Spread training responsibilities out to others in the office. This keeps the office running efficiently as no one is pulled away from their job for too long. It also helps to strengthen office connections between your new employee and those who train them. It allows them to feel comfortable asking multiple people questions instead of just one person.
Training a new employee is never an enjoyable circumstance, but it can be made easier through a few simple tactics. Utilizing cheat sheets to help them adjust to the environment more, removing performance pressure early on, and delegating training will make them less likely to flake and feel more involved in the company.
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