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Team Building tips for Employee Onboarding from Learn2

Onboarding employees is about making the right first impression. We spend so much time trying to find the right employee and once we get them in the door, we don’t spend the time to ensure they are successful. It’s called shooting yourself in the foot. And it is costly. But you can change that with these five simple steps to help with onboarding employees to engage them from the start.


1. Start with WHY. Too often we start with the WHAT without engaging a higher purpose. Don’t assume that the conversations you had during the interview process were enough. They aren’t. Thoroughly describe how your business creates value and why customers want to do business with you. Help the new employee understand your company’s unique value proposition and competitive advantage, and equally important, how their job or role directly creates value within that proposition. Engage their sense of purpose.

2. Set expectations. Provide a clear explanation about company goals, overall work, and specific work projects. Show examples, use descriptors, help them understand their stakeholders – who they rely on for help, and who they directly impact with their work. They are a unique piece in a large puzzle. Help them see this. No job exists in a vacuum, and sometimes we insulate new employees from the bigger picture. We need to throw them in from the start and help them make sense of it.

3. Assign a formal mentor or peer to help the new employee feel part of the team immediately. Becoming part of the social tribe helps them connect with more than just the work and gives them a person to go to with questions or simply for support. Set this up with someone who wants the new employee to be successful.

4. Use high impact questions during onboarding. Encourage them to ask questions. Ask good questions yourself like what’s working or what doesn’t make sense. Take time to answer their questions without making them feel rushed or silly for asking. Questions help the learning. Model this by asking and receiving questions openly.

5. Start onboarding employees by doing. Build a 90-day plan together with immediate, concrete goals and deliverables. Give frequent constructive feedback to start the cycle of productivity and results. Successful people execute and deliver. Start them on this track from Day 1. Have your employee complete one job related task to completion on Day 1 to create the expectation of results and accomplishment.Don’t wait for six months or a year to be successful. Who has time for that?

Do you wonder why your new employees leave within the first year, are not producing or don’t seem like the person you met during the interview? You are not alone. And we can help. Learn2’ interactive and engaging Onboarding for Success programs can help you design and deliver to a new standard and get results right away.


About Author

Doug Bolger is the world’s foremost instructional designer for participant-driven designs. He is changing how the world works, by changing how the world learns.


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