How to Onboard Remote Employees Using Personal Connection

Onboarding remote employees can be tough when everyone is spread out locally, nationally or globally. Many problems can occur, but the most prevalent is establishing a relationship without face-to-face contact. Companies also experience the problem of getting high-quality qualitative and quantitative results. These two issues can lead to a third: creating a feeling of inclusivity. To solve this problem, establish a personal connection when onboarding your employees to build trust, share story details, and embrace emotion.

Make them feel part of the team

Including new employees in team meetings is a great method to build trust and reduce feelings of isolation. New hires want to feel like they are a welcomed part of the team when they start. Learn your new employee’s resume and share relevant details and accomplishments with the team. This will help to build the new employee’s work story with the team in order to gain trust and respect. Make it clear for the team why you hired this employee. Taking the time to meet during the onboarding process will help new employees build relationships with coworkers. They will feel like they are a part of the team and be ready to work to deliver on their goals.

These actions will help new hires feel more comfortable, establishing trust and creating bonds through personal connection.

See the short story “Together Is Better” by Simon Sinek

Be real, genuine, and authentic

Sharing story details is another way to build a personal connection when onboarding remote employees. This comes in the way of communicating team goals, job responsibilities, training, reviews, and milestones.

Oftentimes, new employees will feel lost their first couple of days at a new job if they don’t have some guidelines to follow. To combat this, create a check sheet with appropriate links to tools, contacts and training milestones. These action items should be laid out to be completed over the first few weeks of employment. As a result, new employees won’t feel either over- or underwhelmed during their onboarding process.

Engage with different groups within the organization

Setting meetings with the different groups or individuals your team regularly works with is another tool you can use. Meetings like this can build a relationship between the new hire and colleagues they will work with the most. The conversations don’t have to be work-related; they can be more personal so the employee can show their personality and interests. New hires will gain a better sense of how they fit into the operations of the company through the onboarding process.

These actions will help new hires get a better sense of their role within their team and company.  They will learn how they can achieve their own goals as well as the team goals by knowing these details. As a result, new hires will be able to personally connect with others in the company.

Make employees feel welcome

When joining a new company, all new hires want is to be in an environment where they are made to feel welcome. Whether it’s a lunch or decorating their desk for their first day, new employees want to feel like they are welcomed. This helps boost morale for new hires during the onboarding process.

New employees want a safe environment where they can feel comfortable to share their thoughts and opinions with their colleagues. They want to feel like their voices are heard and that their ideas matter. It’s impactful when new hires are asked to share their ideas, especially if colleagues are receptive to those ideas.

Let your new hires contribute to the discussion

During the onboarding process, teams want to create a connection with new employees so they will make a positive impact. You want your new employee to contribute to the goals of the team while accomplishing goals of their own. This will only work if teams, departments, and companies connect with their employees right off the bat.

Not only do you want new employees to make a positive impact, you want them to be a functional part of the team. This type of relationship translates to better job satisfaction and performance from the employee. As a manager, you need to let your employee know you believe in their skills and encourage them to take on new projects. New hires will feel trusted and more confident in the work that they do.

Be a mentor

Accepting the new hire through a mentoring relationship that aligns business goals and values is the last method you can implement. When a new hire starts, they don’t have a clue about the goals and values of the team. It can be a manager or a seasoned employee that can help guide the new hire through these concepts. Your new hire will feel motivated to work to achieve these goals once you take the time to explain the goals and values of the team.

All of these actions can lead to new hires personally connecting and embracing emotion in their new workplace. They will feel part of the team, ready to achieve both their own goals and their team’s goals.

For most departments and companies, onboarding a new employee is a process of trial and error. Processes need to be constantly refined to meet each department’s needs. No matter the process, personal connection is the way to make the onboarding process easier for remote employees. Establishing trust, sharing story details, and embracing emotion will help your new hire feel like a part of the team in no time.

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