Tag Archives: orientation

Welcoming a new person to the team

In the news this week the new CEO of Fonterra, Theo Spiering has begun his new role with media intensity and a round of meetings with farmer shareholders. A blog that came across my laptop via twitter had a message for the new CEO of HP with advice for beginning her new role.

It got me thinking about how we introduce people into our organisations. Thankfully when most of us have begun new roles it has been without media scrutiny and expert comment. However, we do need to become familiar with the new culture, learn new responsibilities and meet new people. It can be a challenge.

When you recruit a new person, how much thought do you give to the orientation process?  The basics of how things work, where things are and basic health and safety issues can be covered on day one but more comprehensive programmes are important. The following are suggestions for what could be included in an orientation programme to maximise the chance of long term success.

  • A reasonable amount of time spent with all key people to understand expectations, routine and personalities
  • Information about the history, values and strategies of the organisation
  • Communication processes, how they work and what outcomes are expected
  • Policy and procedures, no-go areas
  • Compliance requirements

A well planned induction or orientation process should take place over a period of time and not in the first day, new employees need time to assimilate all information. The orientation process is the first component in a long term training programme and ideally will set the scene for future training.

Next time you recruit a new person, give some thought to how you will integrate them into your organisation. Not just from the perspective of tasks and policy, but also from the perspective of culture and unwritten expectations. To do so may well increase your chances of success.