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How to onboard a new employee virtually

Vanessa Judelman

President, Mosaic People Development

My client Fahim has virtually onboarded three new team members over the past month.

He told me that he is feeling like a failure. “Vanessa, this is just so much easier to do face-to-face. I feel like my new team members are not building strong relationships and I am finding it difficult to coach and mentor them sufficiently.   

Have you had to onboard new employees lately? If so, what are you struggling with? What’s working well for you?

I’ll share some of the best practices with you that I shared with Fahim.

Here are my top three tips for on-boarding new hires in a structured and repeatable way:

  • Create a “new hire” check list and a “manager” checklist. Identify a list of actions you and your new hire need to take. This list should include activities that need to happen before their first day and once they arrive. Once you make these check lists, you can use them repeatedly in the future.
  • Set up a series of important meetings. Make sure you and your new team member have key meetings in your calendar already scheduled. For example, on their first day, discuss and review their key milestones, roles and responsibilities. Then set up meetings for week one, month one and quarter one.
  • Set up team introductions. It is going to be critical for your new employee to build relationships. Set up, in advance, a series of virtual lunch meetings and team meetings where you provide time for team bonding.

Take a minute to watch this video. I’ll provide your with more specific ideas and examples related to these three tips.

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