As exciting as the first day of a new job can be, it is never fun to feel like the newbie and not yet a part of the team. So, as a veteran at the company, when a new employee joins the team, you’ll want to make them feel comfortable in their new environment. To avoid both parties feeling uncomfortable as they are getting to know each other, here are a few ways to help a new team member feel welcomed and at ease.
Introductions are commonly where first impressions are made. Sending an email welcoming your new team member is a great way to get the word out about the new hire and making others aware that there is a fresh face in the office. This will lessen any awkwardness when they begin meeting others and will open the opportunity for an office tour, allowing them to say hello face-to-face.
Extend a Lunch Invite
Another way to help make new team members feel welcome is to extend a lunch invite on their first day. Whether you brought food or are going out to eat, ask if they want to join you. Another idea is to have a catered lunch that day for the team. In an article on Indeed they recommend “You might combine the team meeting with a catered lunch where you introduce the new employee to the rest of the team. By this time, they’ve likely met most of their colleagues, so introducing them to the group is less intimidating. You might begin the lunch by introducing the new employee, explaining their role, and inviting the team to enjoy some delicious food. This setting may make the occasion feel like a celebration and make the new employee feel less nervous about socializing with many new colleagues.”
Make Yourself Available
Before the day starts, take the time to sit down with your new team member to answer any initial questions they might have in an effort to make them feel more relaxed. Additionally, try to clear your schedule as much as possible during their first week to help with onboarding and to walk them through new hire tasks. Regardless of this person’s position, it is always helpful to have someone for them to go to for company information or just to see a friendly face.
Check-In at the End of Their First Day
At the end of their first day, have a short casual meeting to get a feel of how their first day went. Many employees can feel overwhelmed and exhausted at the end of their first day, so check in to get a pulse on how they are doing. In an article on LinkedIn they write, “At the end of their first day, make sure you hold a quick one-on-one meeting with them to check-in and find out how their doing. You’ll want to learn their initial impressions, and struggles they had, any connections they’d still like to make. And you’ll want to reiterate how excited you are for them to join your team (and how grateful you are for the small win they had earlier in the day). Even better, schedule this check-in mid-way through the afternoon and then tell them to take the rest of the day off. Let them know that you know there are friends or family members waiting to hear from them and you want to make sure those people hear how the first day went.”
Without a proper welcome plan, new employees can feel out of place and unappreciated right off the bat. Carving out time to spend with the new hire will make them engaged from the start, automatically adding value to your team. Whether you are connecting over work projects or shared interest outside of the office, building these relationships are important for retaining talent and building an extra layer of trust within your team or department.