Why don’t I have a good staff?

"Why don’t I have good staff?"

The problem might have started on day one.

In the digital age, where reviews can end up going viral consumers, and employers are often eager and ready to complain about the staff. Many negative reviews are more often than not a reflection on the reviewer and not the business, but once it’s out there, it’s out there. I hear from a lot of employers that lament certain hires or roll their eyes when discussing a particular employee. They wonder what they are doing wrong or so many times, “why can’t this generation get it together?”

Well, here is the bottom line. There are going to be people who wow in an interview and never deliver, it’s true. However, more often than not, the blame falls on both the business and the employee. Hiring and bringing on employees is not a process to be rushed or taken lightly. Years ago, one of my very first hires came into work on a Monday morning, left for lunch, and never came back. I was managing a department in my early twenties, and looking back on it, I had no idea what to look for in a good employee or really how to train one.

The onboarding process is vital to you having a successful employee. So let’s discuss what should happen with your new hire.

Training programs or steps will vary depending on the kind of business and size of your business; these steps work for any industry and any size business.

Be clear about expectations. "Drawing the curtains" can mean two very different things to some people.

Be clear.

The reality is, most of us are doing things beyond our job descriptions. The ever-popular, “All other duties as assigned.” Be sure your new employee knows what the expectations are. You cannot blame anyone but yourself if your employee doesn’t do things that they weren’t told they were expected to. There is a difference between taking the initiative and being a mindreader. You know or should know how your staff operates and the functions they all provide. Make sure your newest employees learn that too.

Take it easy.

New hires are apt to be feeling a little nervous. Most are eager to please and excited just the same. They’re also probably suffering from a bit of information overload. (Even if they do a great job of hiding it). It is essential to start slow when you’re training a new hire. If they seem impatient to learn more and appear to be taking in all the information you’re offering, then you can speed up the process and introduce more responsibility.

Take your documents digital

If you don’t have your company’s handbook, job descriptions, expectations, or policies online, consider adding this information to a password-protected section of your website or better yet email it to your new hire on their first day of work. It’s easy to misplace paper documents, it creates unnecessary clutter, and it is wasteful, primarily if you work in a high turnover industry.

Assign a mentor or buddy

New hires will find it easier to adjust to their team if they receive some of their training from someone who does similar work. We recommend, when possible, assigning new hires a mentor or buddy. A friendly peer or senior staff member who can answer questions about everything from HR issues to where the bathrooms are. (One of the top questions new employees feel embarrassed about asking). Allow new hires to spend a day or two with their buddy to learn what the typical daily routine is like at your business. They may be more comfortable asking questions of a peer or colleague instead of you, the owner of the company.

Don’t forget to check-in.

A daily check-in with new hires for the first week or so may feel like you are overdoing it, but it’s better than the alternative of having your employee feel lost, forgotten about or unsure of what to do next.

Give them a task.

Many people are tactile learners. They learn better by doing rather than by listening or taking notes. Don’t be too hesitant to give new hires an initial assignment. Your new employees, more than likely, is going to want to be busy. A task makes them feel productive and valued. If they are sitting around at an empty desk staring at a blank screen with nothing to do, they can begin to wonder if their position is needed. A smooth, starter task is the best way to make a new person comfortable with your company’s processes and the people they’ll be working with.

Train on your company’s values, vision, and goals.

New hires should understand your business’ mission statement and primary objectives almost as soon as they are hired. Introducing this information very early in the onboarding process is a great way to establish the right kind of attitude and culture with your new employee.

Ask them for feedback.

After a week or two, be sure to get feedback from your new hire about the training process. Is there something they’d like to learn but didn’t? Was it too much, too fast? Take this feedback into account for future employees.

Putting a little extra effort into your new hires can make for a better, more longterm employee. If you need help getting set up with your new hire process or training procedures, give Touvus a call. We have business experts on hand to guide you through this initial process and beyond.

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