One of the hardest parts of employee induction is integrating them into a team. Teamwork is a critical element for overall success for new employees, but employee induction often overlooks this issue.
Employee induction often focuses on the new employee in isolation. They learn facts, processes, locations and tasks. Most employees will not work in isolation. They will form part of a team or, at the very least, work with other people or impact the tasks of other staff.
The faster new employees integrate into a team, the better their induction process goes. In particular, improved teamwork helps the new employee pick up best practices and tips from other employees. It accelerates their employee induction process. So let’s consider four practical tips to specifically build employee induction teamwork.
1 – Introduce the new team to the new employee
Your existing staff may be curious about your new employee. So give your team an introduction to their new team member well before the new employee starts. Then remind the team again a couple of days ahead of the start date.
Sharing the new employee’s name, start date and role is great, but you should also try to give the team some insight into the new employee’s professional background and personal interests. Make them a real person, not just a name.
It’s also important to include team building activities in the induction process. This might include welcome morning tea or lunch with the new employee’s team on day one.
Finally, it’s hard to feel part of a team when you don’t have the same tools and workspace as the rest of the team. Turning up on day one to find that you don’t have a desk, computer, access, email, or tools makes the new employee stand out, rather than fit in. So the induction process should ensure their workspace is set-up, building access has been arranged, any induction pack is prepared and everything IT-related is working.
2 – Introduce the new employee to their team
Changing jobs isn’t easy. As new employees wait for their start date to come around, they may have questions or anxieties building in their mind. This is where a welcome pack, provided in advance of day one, can go a long way. A welcome pack also helps reaffirm that they made the right decision.
Ideally, the welcome pack – or welcome online course – should be practical and relaxed. It should include some ‘inside information’ from the new employee’s team. This information should help the new employee feel ‘like part of the team’. This might include the best places to park, the favourite lunch spots, any employee benefits (like discounts at local shops), the team seating plan, local public transport timetables and so on.
The welcome pack can also include an overview of the induction program so the new employee knows what to expect during their first few days.
3 – Focus on team relationships
The key to your new employee’s success will be how well they integrate into their new team and understand your organisation’s culture. The early days of your induction program should, therefore, provide an overview of how your organisation works, including the values, behaviours and attitudes that characterise the culture.
You should also outline local and global reporting lines so the new employee understands their relationship to key people. New employee induction should proactively help to develop relationships and contacts within the company to accelerate their sense of acceptance and belonging.
4 – Ensure there is context for induction teamwork
To help engage your new employee, they must understand how they fit into the bigger picture. Often new employees don’t fully appreciate how their work helps, or hinders, others.
So new employee induction needs to balance information about tasks with an explanation of how their role contributes to the broader goals of the organisation. Explain the broader structure of the organisation so they understand where they fit it. This also provides insights into future career progression opportunities.
Tribal Habits and employee induction
Ultimately, new employee induction must equally look outwards as well as inwards. It isn’t enough to just educate the new employee on their tasks and responsibilities. It might allow them to see the linkages to others, gain the support from their team and quickly feel like they fit it.
With a platform like Tribal Habits, you can easily create this customised information for your organisation and have it available to any new employee, in any location, at any time.
You can even have teams take responsibility for building ‘Welcome to our team’ topics. This is a terrific induction teamwork exercise on its own. With Tribal Habits’ guided topic creation processes and building block editor, a team could build their own induction topic in just a few hours. It’s then easy to update as the team evolves and allows the team to take ownership of their welcome processes for new members.
When you combine rapidly created custom topics for your organisation on culture, roles and team induction with selected topics from our Compliance library, you can have a customised new employee induction process available for all staff and locations for limited time and effort.