Welcome New Staff
Beyond ensuring that new employees know how to do their jobs, the onboarding process should help your staff feel welcomed, acknowledged, and valued in the workplace. The following sections include questions and recommendations for fostering an inclusive culture in your organization.
Build Connection with Staff
- Create opportunities for new hires to connect with existing staff. Schedule meet and greets, facilitate coffee chats, or encourage informational interviews to help build connection.
- If you have a large enough staff, consider creating employee resource groups to help foster community.
- Consider who can be left out when planning social activities, happy hours, or other outside-of-work events. How you can you ensure everyone is included?
- Do not rely on staff to create community on their own. Time and energy from management is needed to facilitate workplace connections.
Build Connection with Managers
- Allow time for managers and their employees to build a connection.
- Casual conversations, informal interactions, and formal meetings are opportunities to get to know staff. Ask questions about life outside of work and acknowledge that not everyone is interested or willing to share this information (and that’s okay!). What are topics that could get these conversations started?
- As a manager, ask your staff about how they prefer to be supervised to tailor your plans for your employees. Understanding and acting on your employee’s work style, motivation, and feedback preferences makes them feel valued.
Build Connection with the Organization
- It is important that employees understand how their work fits into the larger organization. Employees are more motivated to complete tasks when they understand why they are necessary.
- Resources like organizational charts, a mission statement, and departmental descriptions can help new hires understand the organizational context.
- Talking about the bigger picture of one’s work is a great topic for regular check-in meetings with a supervisor.
Present Your DEI Work
- Inform new hires about your organizational work towards diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Be honest here. It is okay if you’re just starting out, but transparency is vital in orienting new hires to their new work environment.
- For ideas on how to create a more inclusive workplace, see these articles from Harvard Business Review, SHRM, Business Insider, or Forbes and conduct your own research to find others.
- Provide opportunities for your staff to engage in DEI work in your organization (if they want to).
- Create robust feedback mechanisms where staff can voice criticisms without fear of retaliation. Collecting feedback is just one step in the process. It is important to then acknowledge and act on employee feedback as well.
- Great Place to Work, What are employee resource groups (ERGs)?
- Asana, Don’t Let Your Onboarding Process Go Haywire
- Wavelength, 10 Ways to Build an Inclusive Onboarding Experience
- University of Washington, New Employee Onboarding Toolkit
- Harvard Business Review, Diversity and Inclusion Efforts That Really Work
- SHRM, 6 Steps for Building an Inclusive Workplace
- Business Insider, Your Black Colleagues Want You to Do more When it Comes to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
- Forbes, 6 DEI Resolutions Your Company Should Commit to in 2021