Are you new here? 3 ways to support your remote hire
Are you new here? 3 ways to support your remote hire
Kristin Barnes De Berti
September 7, 2022

Today’s hiring landscape is a fascinating and complex one. Some companies are laying off employees, some are freezing hiring, while others are using this time to ramp up their workforce and are going all in on their expansion plans. Regardless of where you sit as a manager or an HR professional in this climate, one thing is for certain: The experience of current and new employees is more important than ever.  

In the next few bullets we will walk through 3 key ways to create an experience for your new (remote) employee that they will remember well beyond orientation week. Please note that this is not an “onboarding checklist”, rather guidance on the curation of the experience of a new employee.

  1. It’s all about connection. 

It’s often the people at work that keep us showing up day after day. So connect early, often, and frequently. In an article by Annie McKee "Why having friends at work is so crucial for your success", she suggests:

“Connecting with people boosts our mood and our morale, and friendships provide us with the emotional and psychological strength to deal with whatever comes our way — whether an exciting opportunity, a challenge or a crisis.”

To assist your new hire with cementing connections early on, you must begin this step before your new hire starts. We call this “Pre-Boarding”:

First: Identify one person within your team who can “check in” on your new employee weekly. It truly only takes one solid relationship to make a difference! Here is HBR’s take on How Much Should New Hires Focus on Building Peer Relationships?

Some guidelines on check-in’s:

What a check-in is: 

  • A small gesture that demonstrates “I see you” 
  • A genuine exchange that gives new hires a place to discuss needs and questions
  • If possible, the check-in is delivered by a peer

What a check-in is not:

  • Just one more meeting
  • A productivity meeting to assign tasks
  • A “chore” to be designated 
  • Just “HR’s job”

Checking in can take a lot of different forms — a slack, an email, a quick 1:1 meeting, or even a handwritten card mailed to their home. The “check-in’s” sole intention is to provide your new hire with a sense of belonging. Done well, you can create an environment and experience for your employees that will keep them engaged, interested, and motivated to contribute in meaningful ways. To learn more about operationalizing check-in's within your organization, let’s you and I (Kristin, Ampll CXO) meet. I am happy to brainstorm ideas! Click here to book a time

  1. Establish a “working agreement”

Let’s talk about boundaries. We know, we went there. And no, it wasn’t an accident. Identifying the clear expectations that your new hire has for YOU and YOUR organization is a new concept but it is absolutely imperative for the success of the working relationship. In the HBR management tip of the day, adapted from this article "how to keep your hybrid employee’s engaged and connected", we learn the importance of a working agreement:

“Have your team put together a working agreement that covers each member’s needs — for example, when they work and how often they need to meet — so they can better support each other. “ —Clara Shih

Ask questions like:

  1. Preferably, when do you like to “sign off” for the day?
  2. Are there any personal commitments that you want to prioritize that fall within your workday hours?
  3. At what time during the day do you feel like you are the most productive?

By asking these questions upfront, you are able to establish social norms within your team and organization. Bonus points, if you use a tool to create a culture of transparency and care, where all team members are encouraged to share how and when they achieve their very best work!

Some parting thoughts from experts on establishing a working agreement:

"Every organization is full of unwritten rules, and those who succeed are able to quickly discern the nuances and assumptions behind the behaviors found within an organization's culture."
“Experts recommend creating more opportunities for peer-to-peer communication where current employees can share their work experiences with new hires and provide context for colleagues' working styles.”
  1. Invest in systems to help

Have you ever been to a seminar or an off-site training session and been completely inspired to make a change? And then, you come back to work and well, you don’t? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. This is why investing in systems to help establish the kinds of cultural norms you want on your team is essential. It's one thing to tell your new hire “we prioritize work-life balance.” It’s a whole other thing to show them. So download Ampll to operationalize and systematically augment all of the hard work you have done onboarding your new employees!

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Kristin Barnes De Berti

Kristin is the Chief Experience Officer at Ampll and is so excited to be reunited with a team of passionate, driven, and overall great people! She is a retired Division 1 water polo goalie, a mom of 3 little girls, and an avid runner, swimmer, and yogi. In the past, she headed up the Human Resources function for a successful technology company.

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