How to Balance Training a New Hire and Doing Your Own Job
Gaining a new talented hire is always an exciting thing. However, the hard work is not other yet. In fact, the real challenge has just begun.
Now, you have to figure out how to train your new employee without neglecting your own work. It is truly a balancing act.
It sounds daunting, but fortunately, it is possible. It is a matter of taking the right precautions to keep your own workload organized, such as scheduling and prioritizing.
At the same time, you have to be resourceful and utilize other tools to distribute the weight of managing the new employee.
Here are 10 tips you can use to balance training a new hire and doing your own job.
TIP 1: DETERMINE YOUR WORK PRIORITIES
Before you start training the new hire, it is important to take a look at your own workload. After all, you can’t balance something you cannot measure.
Also, managing a new employee only adds to your list of responsibilities so you have to take time to rethink your daily priorities.
Prioritizing your tasks will ensure you are giving all tasks the right amount of attention and energy. Moreover, it will ensure that you do not fall behind on any tasks and are performing at the highest level of efficiency.
The first thing you need to do is create your daily to-do list.
Write out all your jobs and ask yourself the following questions:
- What is the most important task?
- What is the least important task?
- What do you need to spend more time on?
After answering these questions, rank each of the jobs or tasks according to importance.
This way it is easier for you to see which tasks are valuable and which tasks can be handled later.
When you are handling important tasks, it is important to stay focused and limit distractions.
Avoid checking your email or surfing the internet while you are working.
Instead, save your personal matters for your break time. You want to create a distraction free work environment that encourages productivity.
This way you are making the most of your time and are able to equally split your time between your work and managing the new employee.
Moreover, prioritization can help you uncover more solutions to help make the training process more efficient.
You might find changing the team structure, establishing new standards and goals, or having existing employees take on new responsibilities can easily reduce your stress and other people’s stress.
For more on how to effectively prioritize tasks, check out this video:
TIP 2: MAKE GOOD USE OF A CALENDAR OR PLANNER
Calendars or scheduling, in general, are key to ensuring you have a balanced life.
By maintaining a consistent schedule, you are able to work more efficiently and effectively towards deadlines.
It is how you keep yourself accountable to your different responsibilities.
Moreover, a well-kept calendar can help you have a better grasp on a healthy work-life balance.
This way you know when you tear yourself away from work to focus on family or personal time and when you need to completely focus on work.
On another level, maintaining a calendar or schedule provides you with the best-case scenario for a workday.
In other words, it shows you what you are aiming to accomplish in a day, but also shows you where your schedule is tight or where things overlap.
Scheduling ahead also allows for flexibility. In the case of the incoming new hire, scheduling your workload can give you a headstart on knowing what tasks will need to be rescheduled.
Additionally, it prepares you to be more flexible if you know that your schedule is going to be different from the norm.
TIP 3: CLEARLY OUTLINE NEW HIRE PROCEDURES
A key to training new hires is having efficient, effective and formal procedures. Some companies choose to forgo a formal training program and just let new employees learn on the job.
However, remember how we said 30% of employees tend to leave their jobs after 90 days.
That being said, having a set procedure to acclimate new hires could mean higher retention rates.
To create new training procedures, it is important to establish an end goal.
As in, what do you want your new employees to know by the end of their training? What skills should they have? If you and your company have yet to identify this, now is the time to do it.
Here are some easy steps you can follow to create your training procedure:
- Identify the most important need-to-know tasks
- Identify the best current employee for each training task Don’t use one employee for several tasks. Let each individual employee handle an individual task so they can deliver their best work
- Allocate the right amount of tools and resources
- Train and review for understanding
After you have created a plan, be sure to communicate it to all managers and employees.
An easy way to do it is to supply all managers and employees involved with on-boarding or welcoming the new employee with a new hire training checklist.
This eliminates any ambiguity about what managers are responsible for with the new hire.
Moreover, a checklist ensures that everyone is following the same procedure and rules.
This way you have a better chance of maintaining consistency, order and efficiency throughout the company.
For some cool employee training methods, check out this article.
TIP 4: SCHEDULE NEW RECRUIT TRAINING TIMES AND CHECK-UP TIMES
During a new employee’s first week, they are bound to experience many ups and downs and develop questions.
As such, it is important to make time to check in with the new hire.
And when we say make time, we mean clear out a part of your daily schedule to dedicate to managing your new employee.
Ideally, you want to have several meetings with the new hire within their first week.
This is key to making the new hire feel welcomed and excited about becoming part of the business.
These meetings are a great opportunity to get to know your new hire and how they are managing in the company.
Here are some great questions you can discuss with them:
- Why did you choose this organization?
- Who have you met this week?
- What have other employees done to make you feel welcome?
- What were the highs and lows of this week?
- What concerns do you have?
Holding these constant meetings during their first few days is the best way to make the most of the training time without sacrificing your own time.
By designating a time frame for questions and meetings, you condense the facetime into one sitting rather than being interrupted.
Moreover, setting some time aside to meet with new employees can be a safety net against future costly mistakes.
According to Inc.com, newly hired employees faced issues with meeting deadlines or tasks being done incorrectly because they were uncomfortable with asking for help. In some cases, some employees were too embarrassed to ask for help.
This is why setting aside check-in times are so important. Not only will it save you money, but it will also save you money in the end.
The more opportunities you provide to new employees to communicate with you, the less likely they will be to make mistakes in the future.
TIP 5: GIVE FEEDBACK
According to research, new employees have the highest employee engagement levels.
However, the early excitement of the new job can die out quickly if you do not provide the means for long-term success and growth.
One of the most important ways you can provide those means is through consistent feedback. In general, feedback teaches us if we are doing something well or not. For new hires, feedback is essential to help them navigate their new workplace.
That being said, resist the urge to jump in and take over a job from your new hire just because the results are not meeting your standards.
Not only are you throwing away a potential teaching opportunity, you are also wasting your own time.
It is better to let new employees get used to day to day duties and give constructive feedback as you go along.
Feedback is key to giving your new hires an improved performance and a greater sense of motivation. By letting them make their own mistakes and giving them feedback, you are allowing them to still feel engaged with the company.
Additionally, within the first week of your employee’s training, make sure you introduce your feedback culture.
Make sure the new hire understands the formal and informal ways of giving and receiving feedback.
As time goes on, it is a good idea to utilize peer feedback. Remember, you won’t always be around to observe your employee’s quality of work so peer feedback is a great way to get a more well-rounded review of your employees’ work.
For more tips of giving constructive feedback, check out this video.
TIP 6: DON’T BE AFRAID TO DELEGATE
It is easy to think that as a manager or supervisor that you have to have to take on the employee training all by yourself.
However, you are not a lone wolf, and it is likely you have a team of talented, seasoned employees working under your instruction, who could easily take the weight of employee orientation off your shoulders.
By delegating training tasks, new employees get an opportunity to meet coworkers.
Additionally, they have an opportunity to see the company from multiple perspectives. It is also a great opportunity to see how current employees step into leadership positions and shows that you are invested in your employee’s professional development.
Be smart and pick someone who will make a good first impression on your new hire. Ideally, you want to pick employees who are extremely knowledgeable about the company.
Employees who have at least a year of experience and a clean record of experience are good picks.
Additionally, you want to assign one specific task to each employee. If you divide a single task among a team of employees, there is a greater chance for miscommunication and errors.
If you trust an employee with a single task, it is more likely that the task will be handled in a more thorough manner.
This is also a great opportunity to put a schedule and your new training procedures to good use.
This way you employees know what results you are looking for, what resources they have at their disposal, and what steps to follow.
Moreover, a schedule can help the employee sort out his action plan and maintain his autonomy throughout the whole process.
Delegating employee orientation is a plan where everyone wins if it is done correctly.
Both old and new employees are given a great opportunity to learn and put their skills to the test. Meanwhile, you get your time back to yourself.
For more on how your best employees are great assets for employee orientation, take a look at this article.
TIP 7: INCLUDE TOP EMPLOYEE ONBOARDING TECHNIQUES
On-boarding involves things that occur after an employee is hired.
It can include training, but it can also include things like workspace setup, meeting the team, and setting up mentorships.
Proper on-boarding procedures are key to finding and keeping the best employees in your company.
One of the most effective and efficient on-boarding methods is to start training before the first day.
This is a great way to get certain aspects of training out of the way, so you are not cramming so much information in the first day.
Instead of letting your new hire come in on their first day and blindly wander around, here are some things you can let them know ahead of time:
- Meeting location
- Start times
- A run-down of what you are planning to cover on their first day
- What equipment you are providing for them, such as a company cell phone or laptop
- Contact information for supervisor
- Dress code
- Links or maps to nearby cafes, coffee shops or restaurants
- Any upcoming scheduled meetings, training, orientation, or events
When the first day arrives, work closely with your team to make a memorable first day for your new hire. And try to think outside of the box for this one.
Obviously, meeting the team should be a fun ordeal, but push beyond that.
For example, pair the new hire off with another employee who can give them a rundown of the workplace or organize a lunch out with the team they will be working with.
You can also provide them with company swag and help them set up their first few weeks of tasks so they can easily dive into their work.
By incorporating these on-boarding methods, you are speeding up the amount of time you need to take for training.
Moreover, by getting the rest of your team involved, the new hire’s orientation does not just fall on your shoulders.
You still have a better grasp of your time, but not at the expense of your new hire.
For more guidance on on-boarding techniques, check out this video.
TIP 8: TAKE ADVANTAGE OF MOBILE TRAINING APPS
Now, hands-on training is always a classic, reliable way to train your new hires.
As a matter of fact, a study by Skillsoft saw that 33% of employees preferred to learn by experiencing or feeling what they were learning.
Hands-on training does have the advantage of allowing employees to practice what they have learned. However, with workplaces becoming more remote, mobile training is definitely becoming more popular.
According to Global Workplace Analytics, 25% of Americans are now working remotely. People are starting to work from home to avoid long commutes or simply because working remotely allow more control over their schedule.
However, the autonomy allowed by remote work does not cancel out the need for training. Mobile training can ensure remote employees are completely up to date on policies and company information without having to travel to attend training.
Mobile app training can also be beneficial for employees not working remotely.
Similar to the remote employee, mobile training allows the flexibility of being able to do training anywhere.
Moreover, mobile app training allows employees to learn at their own pace.
Additionally, mobile app training greatly reduces the amount of time you have to spend doing face to face training. With a mobile app, you do not have to be as hands-on and you have more time to commit to your own tasks.
For more tips on boosting employee training with mobile apps, check out this article.
TIP 9: PROVIDE RESOURCES TO NEW HIRES
Another way to avoid having new hires come to you with questions every fifteen minutes or so is to already provide a go-to list of resources, like annual reports, the company website or popular Q&As, for the new employee to explore.
True, it will take some time to comb through old files to find the right documents, but you will be glad you took the time.
This is a great way to give your new hire an opportunity to sit down and acclimate at their own pace.
Moreover, it mentally prepares them with important information before they get to do some hands-on work.
Of course, it is unlikely that they will remember every detail of every document that you give them. However, that is why you give them a printed version to keep on hand.
As they adjust to their new job, they still have something they can refer back to answer any questions that might come up.
Providing those resources ahead of time saves your time from being wasted from answering old questions and allows your new hire to feel autonomous right off the bat.
TIP 10: SET YOUR BOUNDARIES
Like we said before, always remember that new hires are going to have a learning curve to overcome. So, it is in their best interest to make yourself available.
However, it is in your best interest to set up boundaries.
A huge part of this is confidently knowing your values and effectively communicating your limits to your team.
For example, you do not want to be getting phone calls or emails when you are technically off the clock, unless it is an emergency.
However, your team won’t know what constitutes an emergency unless you tell them.
In addition to sharing your limits, make an effort to share your schedule with your team.
This is how you set up a structure that ultimately leads to clearly set boundaries.
If your employees know your schedule, to a degree, they are able to check and see what are the best times to come and talk to you.
However, new employees are not going to know all these things about you immediately.
So, the best way to create boundaries with new employees is to allow a short check-in that allows you to finish you work and still be a good manager.
For example, if a new employee pops in asking for meeting, simply reply with, “I am glad to help you, but is this urgent. If it is not, I’ll come to you in five minutes to help you out.”
The key here is to obviously follow through with your promise.
However, this is an easy way to still prioritize your time and give your new hires the time they need to get their questions answered.
Bringing in a new team member is an exciting thing, but it can feel overwhelming.
However, as long as you assess your priorities, use your time well, set boundaries, and be resourceful with your team, you will easily get your new hire on track at no cost to your time.
These tips will set your whole office up for success and allow you and your team to work to your fullest potential.
We hope these tips were helpful to you! Let us know what you thought!
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