B1 – 90 Garry St. Winnipeg, MB R3C 4H1 - Phone: (204) 478-6644, Fax: 204-478-6677 - info@indep.ca

Posts Tagged ‘returning to work’

6 Ways To Welcome New Employees To Your Staff

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Business man introducing new employee to the companyOn behalf of everyone here at Independence Incorporated, we wish you a very happy new year! And yes, we know 2015 is now a week old. Please forgive us for being a tad late on the well wishes. But as you can imagine, we keep pretty busy. As do the many great business owners that exist all over Canada. And this is especially true for those who have started the new year off by hiring new staff. “Growing the company” is likely a New Year’s Resolution for many.

With our many years of experience assisting individuals back to the workplace after long layoffs due to illness or injury, we have learned quite a bit about the importance of making the transition a smooth one. Often, it’s not at all unlike starting a job all over again from scratch. If you’re in the position of hiring new staff or welcoming back an employee who has been away, you may want to consider some important steps in making the process as comfortable as possible. Here are six tips.

1. Offer a welcoming treat. Making your new staff member’s first day on the job a pleasant one will definitely go a long way. To really make a new or returning employee feel right at home, you may want to offer a kind gesture of some sort. On Inc.com, Lou Dubois writes that you should engage your new employee “by communicating and asking how things are going and by taking them to lunch or coffee, even if it’s just in the office.”

2. Present a comfortable working environment. Remember that there is only one opportunity to give a great first impression. The more comfortable you make your new hire or returning worker, the more productive he or she will be in the long run. Katie White of AssociationAdviser.com suggests that you “treat the training room/building as if it’s your home and you are welcoming out-of-town visitors.”

3. Be accessible and approachable. One of the top reasons that employees will find their work difficult is because of their inability to communicate effectively with their managers. Too often, they are intimidated to do so. To avoid this, Dubois recommends that you maintain “an open-door policy as a manager and ensure that this is communicated to every employee, not just the new hire. This exudes that if they have questions, you’ll be there for them.”

4. Pace their entry on to your team. You may really be eager to get your new employee or returning worker to engage with the rest of your staff members. These relationships, however, will take time. Try not to rush things. Creating a comfortable environment means not doing too much too early. White advises that you “introduce new employees to just a few people each day so they are not overwhelmed with new names and faces.”

5. Define job requirements early. Naturally, it’s all well and good to make your employees feel comfortable at work. But you’ll also need to be firm about what you expect from them. “Include both short- and long-term projects for the new hire from an early stage,” writes Dubois, “New employees feel an inherent desire to contribute to the business right away. You don’t want them working on the big projects, though, until they’re really up to speed on the way your company works.”

6. Keep them informed. Employees like to be in the know about what’s happening with the business they work for. But this goes double for those who are new and still trying to get a grasp of the lay of the land. You’ll want to make sure they are aware of who they can speak to for help. To assist with this, White recommends that you “provide a management contact sheet with details on who does what. It can be overwhelming at first to know who does what.”

6 Solutions For Boosting Team Spirit

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Depositphotos_3231546_xsNaturally, there are many different facets to a safe and comfortable return to work by an employee who has had a long layoff due to illness or injury. But in our experience, one of the most important aspects of a comfortable return is a positive working environment. And in order for a working environment to be a positive one, the people who fill it each and every day need to be in high spirits.

It can be argued then that one of the most important components to one’s successful return to the workplace is an office that is high in team spirit. Of course, this requires business owners and team managers to put forth efforts to ensure that their staff members are receiving ample amounts of motivation on a daily basis. All members of a staff need to be happy when coming in to work each day to really create a positive working environment. Here are six ways to boost team spirit.

1. Be Honest. We’ve all heard the term “honesty is the best policy.” According to Ralph Heibutzki on Chron.com, this is especially true for team managers looking to boost team spirit. “Keeping secrets inhibits staff from giving its best,” he writes, “Employees who know what’s going on are more likely to share your vision and care about making it happen…To promote morale, hold regular informal meetings, but don’t limit the agenda to major announcements.”

2. Recognize Success. A huge part of building team spirit is giving credit where credit is due. Staff members deserve to be recognized for their jobs well done. Letting them know that their contributions matter certainly goes a long way. “Look for workers who contribute to a team atmosphere and have a ‘can do’ attitude,” suggests Gina Scott on GlobalPost.com, “Give a monthly award to the person who jumped in and helped out the most, such as when a co-worker was sick or on medical leave.”

3. Get Everyone Involved. Perhaps there is nothing better to boost team spirit than to encourage employees to actually work as a team. “Collaborative decision-making is a key element in team building,” writes Heibutzki. Be sure to encourage feedback during team meetings and truly listen to what each member of your team has to contribute. Implement the best ideas in your company policies. You may also want to inspire friendly competition among the various members of your team.

4. Play Some Games. Speaking of friendly competition, it won’t hurt your bottom line to sometimes turn work into play. Firstly, you can promote productivity by creating teams within your team to try to inspire everyone to outdo their counterparts. Secondly, for an excellent way to boost morale, you may want to create games that build trust and communication. “Activities like these show co-workers how to produce better as a group,” says Scott.

5. Promote Work/Life Balance. No matter how fun you make the workplace, employees will always cherish time with their friends and family more. It’s just a fact of life. By appropriately balancing out one’s work life with his or her personal life, it helps for that person to be that much more enthusiastic about his or her job. “Cohesion and morale suffers when employees feel tethered to their computers, or see little relief from unrealistic workloads,” warns Heibutzki.

6. Get Out of the Office. Perhaps one of the best ways to make the office a more enjoyable place to be is to get out of it more often! “Getting team members out of their element helps them think from a new perspective and build camaraderie,” informs Scott, “Retreats can last all day or a weekend. They can be filled with trust exercises and motivational speeches that build loyalty to the company brand and to each other.”