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Onboarding's Affect on Overall Employee Performance

Onboarding's Affect on Overall Employee Performance

My first big job out of MBA school was as a HR manager for a technology department comprised mostly of programmers.

As a young, enthusiastic new employee I came in with all kinds of ideas for improving our onboarding and sense of teamwork. While management liked the fresh energy, they didn’t see these initiatives as strategic and weren’t keen to rock the apple cart relegating my role to one of welcome wagon, social committee and glamorized office administrator (because I had an office).

If you work for an organization that still views Onboarding (or HR for that matter) as administrative, our last blog post provided some very compelling stats to develop a business case for a new Onboarding program.

Maren Hogan of Forbes reported that “Creating a structured onboarding program is key. According to a study by the Wynhurst Group, when employees go through structured onboarding, they are 58% more likely to remain with the organization after three years.”

Once you’ve got C-suite buy-in to revamp your Onboarding program, how do you get started?

I like to think of Onboarding as similar to the 4 stages Psychologist Bruce Tuckman used to describe team development; forming, storming, norming and performing.

A well thought out Onboarding program moves employees through these four cycles with the ultimate goal of reaching the “performing” stage sooner and for longer.

How fast a new employee moves through each stage will depend on their individual skills, their understanding of what is expected of them and the type of leadership they receive.


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