New hires often struggle to understand the most effective ways to communicate within their new employers. This is partly due to the difficulty that comes with navigating a new company culture and establishing relationships with new teams of colleagues. This is also partly due to the fact that communication strategies, tools, and styles naturally vary between organizations (and even internal teams). So, to help managers help their new hires, here are three ways to improve the lines of internal communication.
1. Create a feedback cycle
Plenty of business leaders and those responsible for training recent hires are comfortable providing feedback on their new teammates’ performance in the first few months. But how often is this constructive criticism reciprocated?
Instead of having criticism flow in one direction—from managers to those they oversee—businesses can establish a healthy environment for dialogue between their organization’s horizontals through a cycle of feedback. Perhaps the easiest method for enacting this change is through an internal feedback software. Unlike face-to-face conversations, where power dynamics between individuals may come into play, these types of tools offer a safe, anonymous space to provide candid insights from their new hires.
Work teams that use these types of digital feedback spaces can tailor their feedback cycles to accommodate new hires by creating employee surveys or questionnaires that focus on their training and onboarding experiences. Relevant questions include:
- How would you change this hiring program if you were me?
- Do you believe you have all the necessary resources to be successful at your job?
- What has surprised you the most about working in this position or at this company?
- How do you prefer to communicate (this includes feedback, daily correspondence, and miscellaneous updates)?
2. Use the right tools
Whether you’re completely accustomed to the tech your new company uses or just logging on to these tools for the first time, new hire programs should have a clearly defined strategy for tech usage in order to have productive conversations.
Just how important are effective communication tools? One workplace productivity survey discovered that, on average, employees spend nearly an hour and a half each day in their inboxes, and that a staggering two-thirds of their workday is dedicated to communication-based activities. With the right technology in place, businesses enable their teams to spend less time working through technical difficulties and more time getting actual work done—meaning that new hires have the valuable time they need to become accustomed to their new position.
Today, organizations have access to tools for communicating in every capacity, so it’s best practice to focus your investments on resources that will directly resolve the distinct communication barriers that you face. Companies that struggle to connect teams across departments and offices can rely on unified communications tech to form one workable solution for the entire company. For HR teams that feel constantly flooded with candidate contact information and correspondence, services like applicant tracking software can help you make the transition from potential hire to full-fledged employee as seamless as possible. Or, if your company struggles to foster strong team dynamics, create your own platform for shout-outs, celebrations, and recognizing your new hire’s first accomplishments for the company through electronic employee recognitions.
3. Encourage collaborative environments and personal development
The best way to understand a new company is to understand the people that are its foundation. By encouraging new team members to have conversations with their team leaders, upper management, and even personnel outside of their department, you will create an environment where information sharing, collaboration and teamwork are valued.
Team dynamics are not only important to productivity and engagement as a whole in organizations but also are essential to retaining younger generations who are new to the workforce. In many ways, millennials are the “perpetual new hire”—60 percent of younger people are open to new job opportunities, meaning they are the most likely to leave your company after the shortest amount of time.
In order to proactively retain new hires who are millennials, it’s important for businesses to consider why they are leaving and what, exactly, they are looking for in their workplace. The general consensus is that millennials seek professional development, new skills acquisitions, and human-to-human connections in the workplace much more than older generations.
The solution? Mentorship programs and one-on-one conversations between new hires and executives teams are a great place to start, and they might be the best method to help your newly hired talent find their place to shine within your business.
Rebeccah Vincent is an online content professional who spends many of her days researching, tracking and reporting the ever-shifting world of business strategy.
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