7 Creative Ways to Onboard New Hires

In lieu of greeting new employees with stacks of benefits paperwork and dull presentations about your company culture here are seven creative ways to onboard new hires:

Do you have an onboarding plan for new hires?

“Each year, nearly 25% of [employees undergo] some type of career transition. Turnover is expensive, so it’s important to support new employees with comprehensive onboarding to ensure their success,” according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). “Onboarding is the process by which new hires get adjusted to the social and performance aspects of their jobs quickly and smoothly, and learn the attitudes, knowledge, skills, and behaviors required to function effectively within an organization.”

Careerbuilder.com explains, When you are “charged with the task of making new employees feel welcome, establishing their responsibilities, orienting them in their new position and familiarizing them with the company culture, there’s a lot to cover and the process is often overwhelming.”

In lieu of greeting new employees with stacks of benefits paperwork and dull presentations about your company culture here are seven creative ways to onboard new hires:

1. Ask new hires to share an “About Me” presentation at your staff meeting.

“The subject: ‘All About Me.’ The presentation covers their professional career, their hobbies, their family life, etc. This gives everyone something to talk with them about. I encourage creativity; they don’t have to give an actual PowerPoint presentation. One person did their entire presentation using only a photo, [and] our last hire used Vizify to guide us [through] her ‘all about me’ presentation.”

– Ben Lloyd, President of Amplify Interactive: @AmplifySEM

2. Ensure early participation in scheduled events.

“We provide professional bartender staffing services, so the on-boarding activity that works best for us is to have new hires actually serve as bar backs for the events that we have been contracted for during their 2-week training period. They get to see that bartending, as fun as it can be, isn’t always a crystal stair. Watching the veteran bartenders in action interacting with guests while managing recipe recall really puts things into perspective, especially with the music blasting at these events. At the end of the night, they get tipped out by the bartenders, demonstrating how valuable their contribution really is to the overall operation.”

– LaTanya White, Owner and Operator of 71 Proof: @71ProofCCG

3. Develop an interactive onboarding activity for new hires.

“I developed a challenge that has become a favorite for both new hires and employees.  Throughout the on-boarding training period, the new hire completes a scavenger hunt that involves engaging in various activities with members of the company such as joining a fantasy sports league or participating in a community service event.  This process is designed to make the new hire comfortable and to get to know the current employees on a more meaningful level.”

– Mike Montali, Co-Founder of Harbor Business Compliance: @mikemontali

4. Encourage a competitive spirit amongst new hires.

“Each of our new consultants receives their very own bell upon setting their first product demonstration with a client.  They keep the bell at their desk and are able to ring it each time a new demo is scheduled.  This keeps the competitive spirit going around the office and, on good days, it can get quite musical.”

– Ethan Meyer, Managing Director of PitchBurner: @pitchburner

5. Encourage new hires to take specialized courses and gain certifications.

“If they pass, we sponsor them. Given that our company conducts business completely online, it’s important that our staff members, both here and overseas, have some marketing, advertising, or social media knowledge. If more and more of our workers are certified in Google AdWords and Analytics, we can build a team of people that can brainstorm together because of the knowledge that everyone has in common.”

– Ian Aronovich, CEO of GovernmentAuctions.org: @GovtAuctions

6. Sponsor team-building outings for new hires.

“We have a ton of fun team-building activities here at our company, with some of my personal favorites being the various five-star restaurants we dine in, group fishing trips out in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, and summer boat trips around Manhattan. All of these outings help the workers, especially the new ones, bond outside the office, where they can truly be themselves. The result is that morale overall is elevated; people generally seem a lot more cheerful and much more energetic the following days, thereby boosting our productivity.”

– Michael Pesochinsky, Co-Founder and Vice President of GovernmentBargains.com: @govbargains

7. Ask new hires to “fess up” on their worst work experiences.

“I [have] new employees go around the room, introduce themselves, and share either their worst experience in the workplace or in college. This allows all attendees to reveal an embarrassing moment or a situation from which they’ve grown and enables the group to share a laugh, thereby building rapport amongst the team.  At the same time, management is afforded the opportunity to learn about the previous work habits of new staff.”

– Natasha R.W. Eldridge, Founding Partner of Eldridge Overton Educational Programs: @natashaeldridge



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