Today’s entry and mid-level employees are motivated by different things than the generations before them. According to a study by Sparks & Honey, 60 percent of the millennial generation want to make a difference in the world and many expect work hour flexibility and creative outlets in every position they are hired into.
To make sure you’re motivating and engaging your younger hires right away, it’s important to think outside of the box and get creative. Here are some ideas you can easily implement:
Don’t Wait Until They Walk Into the Office
In an ideal world, every new employee that walks into the office on their first day would be sincerely pumped and ready to go. When going through the hiring process, consider how you’re instilling the company’s mission, values, vision and culture even before the offer letter is signed.
If you set realistic expectations from the very first conversation, they should walk in truly excited to be a part of something they already believe in and are aligned with. Keep up the same level of enthusiasm and cultural style that your employees possess throughout each step of the hiring process. This way, new hires will know if they can match it before even accepting and they will more clearly understand the culture and what it takes to succeed within the organization.
Offer Early-On Career Paths
Giving new hires a glimpse into where they could be five years, one year, or even six months from their date of hire can be a powerful motivator to work hard. Giving them this clear picture of their bright future within the company is a great way to get them to work harder to reach those milestones even faster.
Companies that have a less clear growth path for its employees because of the sporadic and innovative nature of the business, should try having successful employees meet with the new recruits to share their story and path. This may not give them a path that they can personally follow, but it provides them with inspiration and motivation of certain milestones that they can aspire to achieve along the way.
Provide Welcome Meals
It is not uncommon for managers to take their new hires out to lunch as a way to get to know them on a more personal level. In addition to this, offer a welcome meal that you can invite the entire department or even company. If your company has a lot of hires, it may be more appropriate to set up a monthly welcome meal in which employees are able to chat with and get to know the new hires.
Depending on what works best, this could be breakfast, lunch, or even dessert. More informal and fun gatherings like these will not only make the new hires feel special and a part of the team, but also give them a chance to interact with people they may not otherwise interact with on a regular basis. Take the personalization up a notch by asking the new recruits what their favorite foods are and try to incorporate that into the meal.
Develop A “Mentor-Friend” Program
Mentorship programs that pair new hires with more tenured employees have long been used as a way to engage and motivate new employees. They allow new hires to ask questions to someone that has been there and done that, while providing a great resources to learn the business and company processes.
However, putting a slight spin on the mentorship program by pairing individuals that could get along outside of work as well can make it a great way to allow new hires to acclimate themselves with the team. This type of program is not meant to bring another manager figure onto the new hire, but rather a friend that can introduce them to the happenings within the company and make them quickly feel like they have friends and aren’t an outsider.
Motivating and engaging your new entry and mid-level hires should inspire you to think outside of the box. Try to enjoy the opportunity to change things up a bit and get everyone involved, rather than just those who are a part of the hiring process. New hires affect the success and failure of the entire company, so it’s important that everyone understand how important they are in acclimating new hires with the rest of the team.
What creative things have you implemented within your organization to engage new recruits? Leave a comment and share your ideas!
About the Author: Heather R. Huhman is a career expert, experienced hiring manager, and founder & president of Come Recommended, a content marketing and digital PR consultancy for job search and human resources technologies. She is also the instructor of Find Me A Job: How To Score A Job Before Your Friends, author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships (2011) and#ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010), and writes career and recruiting advice for numerous outlets.