10 Thoughtful ways to welcome new employees

By creating and communicating a ‘structured’ Day One for the new employee, managers can help new joiners settle in

Day one on a new job can be a rather intimidating time for new hires. In some cases, it might even be their first day in a new city or a new role, which can add to the overwhelm. On this rather momentous day, they will be meeting many new faces and learning their names, along with their role and contribution to the organization in greater detail. All this can add up to be very overwhelming for the new employee.

The chaos of day one can show up in unsuspecting ways at work—and this can happen to anybody! Stress can cause slip-ups and even delays in grasping important points related to the tasks at hand. While there are a host of things that new joiners can do to tackle Day One like a pro, like being well-prepared, introducing themselves to the team informally beforehand, getting a workout in to calm their nerves, etc., their managers can do a great deal to welcome the new employee. Psst, think about creating checklists!

By creating and communicating a ‘structured’ Day One for the new employee, managers can help new joiners settle in. This effort on the manager's part will not only create a lasting positive impact on the employees but will also introduce them to the culture and modus operandi at their new workplace.

And this is vital because good employee onboarding has been shown to improve retention by 82% and productivity by over 70%. Equipping your employees to excel at their job starts before they even step foot in the office.

All these are good reasons for managers to go the extra mile to make an excellent first impression, right? A coordinated effort from the entire team, and the new joinee, can make for an outstanding day one for the new employee!

A cartoon of a manager speaking to a new employee over a takeaway cup of coffee. A speech bubble says "Welcome to the team!"
A warm chat over coffee can help ease employees into their new role

Looking for ways to welcome a new employee to the team? Here is what experts say!

Adding new talent to your team can be a major milestone for your company. You get an exciting, fresh perspective on familiar problems. And of course, you get an extra pair of hands to get work done. With so much at stake, it's critical to get the onboarding right so that the objectives of hiring are achieved. Let's explore a few pragmatic ways postulated by Human Resources experts, to welcome the new team member.

Day one game-plan

Assuage your new employee's anxiety by sharing a plan of how their first day at work will look like. Clearly state the date of their joining, office timings, and what time they're expected to report to work. Let them know details of the training programs that they will be a part of, along with their schedule. You should also encourage them to sign-up for your company's shared online collaboration platform as soon as possible. And if you use Sketchnote, then you could add them to your organization and get them to have a look around.

Greet you new joinee with a welcome message

An encouraging message from the manager can empower the employee to ease into their new world. And it's critical for managers to absolutely nail this first communication! Managers must let the new employee know that they are open to their ideas, and down to experiment with them. Assuring new employees that it's okay to stumble and make errors here and there while getting the hang of their new role, can ease off a lot of pressure on their end.

Introduce them to their new team

It's absolutely normal for new employees to get nervous when they meet the entire team for the first time. There are a lot of names and a lot of faces to remember! Ensure that the introduction session is a free-flowing one, where the whole team participates. Shifting the spotlight from the new joinee to all the other members can help calm their nerves in this meeting. Talking about shared passions or interests with the team can help add a fun and jovial atmosphere to the meeting.

Plan a coffee chat with them

An informal meeting can help get to know the new employee better. This allows the manager an opportunity to share the organization's overall mission and the new entrant's contributions, with the new joinee. The manager could also share how they envision the new employee's role evolving over the course of time. A small chat like this could actually give a new joinee a lot of perspective regarding their new roles. For remote employees, you could conduct a culture fit quiz to understand them better.

Set up their workstation

Before your new teammate arrives, plan out some time to set up their workspace well. Ensure that it's clean and doesn't have any paperwork etc from team members who previously occupied that space.

You could even leave a welcome card at their desk if they seem like someone who would appreciate it. Remote employees could be greeted with online cards or messages of encouragement. A small gesture like this can go a long way to making them comfortable within the team.

Set them up to succeed with relevant training modules

Devising relevant training for your new teammates is the best gift you could give them. This will help them come to speed with their teammates and prepare them to take on their roles effectively. The training will add to their confidence and reflect in their contribution from the very beginning.

A manager and his team with their hands stacked together. The word cloud around them reads Set up work buddies, introduce their first assignment, ask for onboarding feedback, end day one with friendly conversation
Make your employees' first day a success

Quick tips on how to welcome a new employee and make their first day a success!

Set up your new employee with a ‘buddy’

A work buddy could show them around at your office and could even be a go-to for any questions they might have. Ensure that the point-of-contact employee is willing to coordinate and be patient with the new joinee to avoid any unpleasantness.

Introduce them to their first work assignment

Your new joinee is now super-ready to take over the reins of their new job! Walk them through their first assignment, citing examples and references to make it easy for them to understand it clearly. Be patient with them, and encourage them to take notes if they need to.

Ask them for their feedback on the onboarding process

Engaging them over feedback on the onboarding process can help them feel like they are contributing to the team from the get-go. This could also help you address any of their concerns, that may have been overlooked earlier.

End their first workday with a friendly conversation

Make sure to catch up with your new teammate at the end of the day. A few encouraging words can go a long way to help the new employee to face the challenges that lie ahead. And they can clarify any doubts they may have regarding their role, instantly!

By adding a strong structure to your new joinee's first work day at your office, the cooperation of all your teammates, and some patience, your new employee will feel welcomed at their new workplace. And this feeling of inclusion will add to their productivity, and ownership of their work. Good luck!

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