First impressions are important. A new employee’s first impression of the company may have occurred during the hiring process, but the first day of work is another critical opportunity for the employer to make a great impression.
A quote from Maya Angelou sums this up really well: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Lots of companies focus on their orientation or training programs, but many overlook the little things that speak volumes to an employee. You’ve carefully selected that employee to be part of your team, and their first day is an opportunity to make them feel important and special. It’s also an opportunity to demonstrate that your organization values preparation.
It’s amazing how many organizations get this wrong. Things like not having a computer or even a desk ready for an employee or taking weeks to get them an ID badge do not create a good first impression. Neither does taking an employee on a quick office tour for introductions and then sticking them in a cubicle to read the employee handbook and training manual until time for lunch.
The logistics of what a great first day looks like may vary from one organization to the next, but it all comes back to how you make the employee feel. Does the front desk know their name when they report to work? Is their desk already marked with their name and stocked with necessary supplies? Are they provided an organizational chart so they can understand the team structure of employees they meet? Are they given contact information for their immediate supervisor and team members so they can reach out when questions arise?
Traditional orientations still have their place, as do training sessions to ensure an employee is equipped to succeed in their new role. But don’t get so focused on the details of those programs that you overlook the importance of welcoming an employee on their first day.
If you need help creating a positive first impression for new employees, contact Why HR today to discuss our human resource consulting services.