It’s tempting to want to be able to employ a person who can slot in to their new role straight away, and on the first day and “get it right”. We can’t blame them for wanting that – we’d like that to happen too! But get what “right”? Right in their eyes or in the employer’s? How do they know if they are getting it right? How can they check how “right” they are getting it? And what about everything else? Systems, processes, people, customers – do those conversations wait until they are problems too?

One of the things that we hear most commonly from job applicants when talking about previous roles and hopes for a new role is training (by which they usually mean familiarisation). This might mean induction, but most often, irrespective of their experience, they want to know very clearly what is expected and if there is a specific way or process. Once they know that, they want to be left to do the job in the confidence that they can use their skills to get the “right” things done in the “right” way and for the “right” reasons.

Set up for….?

Employees deeply resent feeling unsupported or that they’ve been set up for failure, just as they get disengaged not knowing what is going on around them or how things work, from the little things to the bigger picture. We’ve seen and heard from potentially great employees, in both blue and white collar roles, who failed because the crucial first days, weeks and months were left to chance. Some said they felt thrown in the deep end, uncertain of purpose, goals and processes, and then blamed when things didn’t go according to an expectation that was never explained to them or they never felt was achievable.

On the other hand, a client we work with closely with has a very different view, training all new employees diligently until they are comfortable with every process involved in their role, irrespective of any previous experiences in similar roles. This means that the team is confident in what is expected and what to do if the unexpected happens. They know what buttons to push, what happens with paperwork, how to interact with customers, how to interact with and look after their equipment, and then continually updated on how to become even more expert at doing their job. This team is set up for success and, with an amazingly employee low turnover rate, high customer satisfaction and flawless contract retention, achieve it very regularly.

What to do

Plan your recruitment process around not only the skills and behaviours you are looking for, but how you will ensure every employee is set up for success from their very first day. This means not only a safety-policy-and-fire-exits induction, but a progressive program of you instructing, coaching and validating over the first days, weeks and months so that employee competence, confidence and productivity are enhanced.

If you’d like assistance with developing an on-boarding and training program that is perfect for you, let us know – we’d be happy to help.