Onboarding Coaching, for Forward-Thinking Leaders
We all remember the varying levels of pain associated with joining a new organization. You can continue on with the traditional natural ramp-up time, or you can be forward thinking and support your new hires as they address the following questions:
“I’m replacing a popular leader; how do I best show the team I want to continue on with the good and also enhance the team based on my ideas?”
“I just found out that someone on the team lost out on the role I was hired for; how do I ensure they stay engaged and motivated?”
“I’d love to put all of my planned changes into place on Day 1; how to I balance the need for change with the appetite and ability for change in my new organization.”
“I’ve spent two weeks struggling with my laptop arrival, log-in credentials, and setting up my new cell phone while all my peers around me are operating at full speed; I know some ramp time is expected but how do I know I’m balancing the need to stay patient with the need to contribute right away?”
“I know my initial Brand campaign started on my first day, like it or not; Who is going to help you ensure this Brand campaign is on track? “
“I am joining a new company in a new industry so I know that I will be facing a heavy learning curve before I become truly productive. How do I manage my first 3-6 months so I don’t get overwhelmed and show that I am in control? “
How many people reading this article have had perfectly seamless onboarding experiences at every new organization throughout their career? If you haven’t been through an onboarding that needed improvement you are lucky to be operating in rarified air. The logistical part of the onboarding pain is important but that’s not what we are solutioning here. We are discussing how to solution a problem that has existed for years.
Regardless of level, everyone joining a new team wants to impress those around them. They want their peers to support them, their direct reports to respect their ideas and values, and their managers to feel good about the decision to bring them on. We’ve all gone through this struggle alone, but why? “Call me if you need anything” feels great to say, but do you really think all questions are being addressed in an efficient way? Think back to when you were in that position. You likely asked for guidance on obvious issues but thought it would reflect negatively if you asked too many questions. I am sure you have seen those exceptional people around you that were able to adapt quickly, manage expectations and become productive in no time. What approach did they take to make them successful? You know you were hired to provide solutions yet navigating a completely new environment while trying to stay on track to deliver on your strategic plan needs proper support. If you now realize how much it would have accelerated your impact on the organization to have a coach help you navigate your start, why aren’t you now the forward-thinking leader that is implementing an onboarding coaching program for your team?
Coaching for All
It’s time that onboarding coaching is recognized as an essential tool for helping with the difficult task of joining a new organization. Just think of all of those struggles you’ve had in the past and insert a coach into the equation. Having someone to bounce ideas off of, ask the tougher questions to, and generally lend support to the good things you’re doing is invaluable. A good coach will have the experience and insights to help you overcome these challenges. A good coach will take an objective and practical approach to identifying your obstacles and helping you achieve results. Corporate culture improvements need to start with progressive ideas like ensuring every critical hire is supported during their first 3-6 months on the job. It’s time companies stop accepting the natural learning curve as 6-12 months when the positive new hire impact can be accelerated tremendously with coaching. It’s time that new employees are allowed to focus on bringing all of their unique innovation and creativity to your company; thereby delivering on the promise you jointly envisioned when their offer letter was extended. In today’s dynamic work environments, a company only stands to gain by investing in its employees the moment they join. Attrition is costly. Disengagement is detrimental. If you have made the investment to bring that employee on board, why not protect your investment? Be a progressive forward-thinking leader and invest in onboarding coaching, the productivity impact will cover the cost multiple times over.
Brett Bourgon, Registered Corporate Coach (RCCTM)
B Inspired Leadership Coaching
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