If you’ve ever been to a new employee orientation, it is likely that you’ve experienced the excitement in the room as people learn all about their new employer. You’ve also (I hope) experienced the buzz of energy as the organization toots its own horn regarding the value of their culture and what great options there are for growth. Employee orientations make it apparent that from now on, each day will begin a commute filled with the glory of having just landed in career utopia.
And if you are a leader but you haven’t attended your company’s orientation in a while, it might be a good time to do so. (Note: if you don’t have one, you should seriously consider creating one if you have any hope of retaining employees.)
Attending your own orientation not only provides an injection of enthusiasm from eager individuals ready to start on a new journey, it also provides a strong reminder of the following:
Everyone in the room is hoping that everything being said about the company is true.
As a leader, you should pause to ask yourself a few critical questions based on observing this inspired hope:
- Are we delivering on our promises contained in the values we present? If I walked anywhere in our company, would I see them reliably?
- Do our seasoned employees know what is being talked about at orientation, and are we speaking the same language? Are the things “here” being reinforced over “there”?
- Do we spend a majority of our time talking about the company and how this new person will fit in, or how they can use their strengths as individuals within their roles to make the company even better?
- Do we establish where the employee can go for more information after orientation and how they can get their questions addressed?
- If we are using technology to distribute content, does the employee have an opportunity to ask questions or have a live session to connect with key leaders?
- Are we supporting them to feel welcomed into the organization or simply hoping to get all of the boxes checked?
Finally, most importantly, is the company that you say you are actually the company that they are getting?