This month I had the terrific opportunity to speak at the North Carolina Auto Dealers Association Controllers Conference. This was a new event for NCADA and they had terrific response; in fact they had to turn people away because the event sold out (which had nothing to do with me being there).
My first presentation was on running an effective onboarding and training program. As is typical with these talks, we had lively debate and interaction in the audience. Another standard experience was that we had a wide spectrum of program management in the room. This included dealers with very sophisticated onboarding and mentoring programs for new hires….and even those that don’t find out they have a new employee on the job until that person comes looking for their first check (“check…who are you again…and who hired you???”).
Here are some key takeaways from our session:
- You must have a defined process that is followed for each candidate and new hire. This is much easier when done through automation.
- If done right, great onboarding and training will dramatically reduce the time it takes to move an employee from a “beginner” to a “peak performer.” This is backed up by 76% of employees who, when surveyed, said that training was the “most important” thing a new employee needed to contribute quickly.
- Some of us have a short period of time to onboard employees, but we can still take steps to make this a more impactful time for the new employee. These four simple steps can improve your orientation tomorrow:
- Be on time
- Stay focused on your new employee
- Pick a setting free of distractions
- Make sure your forms are current and professional (electronic is even better!)
- Don’t ignore the need for your new employee to socially integrate into their new team
- Pay attention to how you communicate your company culture
- Have clear job descriptions, goals and performance metrics documented for new hires
Stay tuned for more updates from my second session at NCADA on “Avoiding the Pitfalls of Hiring & Firing.”