Past experience suggests that the most difficult stage for new joiners is between 3 and 6 months. Introductions are over, the ‘honeymoon period’ is well in the past and the need to perform and make an impact at work becomes very real. At the same time, they may still be under pressure to make home life run like clockwork.
Regular communication can provide clarity of your expectations and show understanding and support.
Here are some suggested actions:
- Recognise things will be changing for them at a different rate to existing employees and plan in more regular discussions than you would normally.
- Continuously review work patterns, workload, responsibilities, key relationships. You may need to find ways to adapt and change their role as they settle in and find their ‘sweet spot’.
- Be aware of any “crisis points” triggered by pressures at home or at work and offer appropriate support.
- As a minimum, conduct development discussions at 3, 6 and 12 months ensuring that they have clear career objectives to work towards and that you are continuing to explore their career aspirations.
- Encourage them to use the support system that has been provided for them e.g. coaching and workshop opportunities and discuss with them what they are learning and how these are helping.
- At about 6 months after joining, consider exploring the option of a Sponsor to help widen their exposure and experience.
- And finally, keep an honest open dialogue with them.