It’s back to school time and many of our children will be nervously anticipating their moves into the next year group or a new school. So it’s a good time to be thinking about what makes a good transition into a new role for us as adults when we are moving jobs. All such changes bring their challenges, but the level of challenge ramps up when we start to bring in additional change factors such as a new company, new country or new language.
According to Wikipedia, onboarding, also known as organisational socialisation, refers to the mechanism through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviours in order to become effective organisational members. It differs from induction or orientation in that it goes beyond the transactional work of getting cardkeys and laptops to the full process of becoming a company insider.
There are lots of guides to onboarding, for example The first 90 days by Michael Watkins, but in our view, they miss elements that are important for everyone, and especially vital to those relocating across borders.
The Enhanced Relocation onboarding model embraces both the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of onboarding by focusing on four key dimensions.
This is the process of working out what you need to know to do your job. You need to understand the systems and processes that get things done. You also need to understand the overall company strategy and how what you do fits in to this. It’s important that you expend your efforts in doing things that bring the company success and will be recognised as such.
To be successful in a new company you need to form functional relationships with your boss, peers and team and well as strategic stakeholders inside and outside the business. Who do you need to know and how can you form powerful coalitions?
The two points of ‘what’ above are well served by other providers of onboarding training, and of course, we can deliver this too. What other providers miss, in our view, is an adequate coverage of the ‘how’ elements.
The culture that new employees find themselves in is effected by many factors: functional, corporate, industrial and national. Navigating your way through these to understand “what counts around here?” and “how do I get myself heard?” is a huge task.
Our model helps new starters understand their own cultural make-up and to become cultural detectives, able to notice differences and then make the important decisions about where to fit in, and where to stand out. This is an ongoing process, and one where coaching or mentoring can make a big difference in supporting a successful transition.
All transitions provide an excellent opportunity for development and growth. Onboarding into a new role is a great time to explore where we are in our personal and professional development and to take some steps to enhance our skills, confidence and our evolution towards an authentic, flourishing and fulfilled life.
Now is the time to take stock of where you are and to set exciting and challenging targets for yourself. What skills and knowledge do you need to be successful now? Is it time to revisit your core values and beliefs? Does your world view need to evolve for you to fully embrace this new opportunity? Can you meet this challenge and still protect a healthy work/life balance?
Embracing this opportunity for self-development will make a great contribution to making a good transition and being an ongoing successful team member.
Are you keen to make your onboarding a success? Get in touch with us to find out more.