New Hire Onboarding Process Increases Productivity
The new hire onboarding process, for so many companies, is crammed into orientation or fails. New hire onboarding increases productivity when used correctly. Unfortunately the main causes for onboarding failure are two-fold. One is Human Resources tries to use a “one-size-fits-all” approach. Secondly, it involves too much valuable time of executives to follow the onboarding plan.
The executive recruiter found the “A Player you need. Your expectations are that the new leader or key staff person you just hired will make an impact sooner rather than later. You’ve made an investment in strategy, compensation, and a recruitment fee. Now is the time to utilize a CUSTOMIZED new hire onboarding process to increase the potential of gaining a Return on your Investment.
If you had engaged an executive search firm to recruit for a key position at any level, the recruiter should provide a custom employee onboarding set of tools based on the role and team dynamics. Doing so results in the new hire meeting performance objectives sooner and being retained longer. A best practices employee onboarding process will help you accomplish all of the above when designed and facilitated as a customized, one-on-one version.
The Type of New Hire Onboarding Process that Works
In order to design, document, and deliver a viable, easy to utilize new hire onboarding process that works requires a few hours each month for both the new hire and manager he/she reports to. The guidelines should consist of a psychometric based team profile, the new hire’s role fit and team fit analysis, a personal action plan for the new employee, a mentoring / coaching guideline, and a measurement tool.
Many companies spend tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars with so-called Human Resources or People Management firms or psychology-based firms that in the end produce a one-size-fits-all model based on a corporate profile / corporate culture. They are very time consuming so rarely are they carried out for new employees to fruition. To make matters worse, often it is handed over to HR, who is not part of the individual team the person was hired for and their focus is on orientation and “corporate culture” assimilation rather than how the new hire assimilates into the team he/she will be working within.
Facilitated correctly, the plan should smoothly and quickly assimilate the new employee into the team culture, not just the company culture. By capturing profile data about the new hire, his/her direct reports, and the organization, a plan is developed for maximizing understanding, positive communications, and relational communications effectiveness.
An effective new hire onboarding process ensures the new executive or employee knows exactly what the senior team expects and receives specific feedback early, helping him/her to establish effective influential networks, social, community, and professional, internal and external relational communications and conflict resolution skills. The end result is higher retention because the phased activities lead to deeper engagement, innovation, and job fulfillment levels.
How About Costing You ZERO for a Custom New Hire Onboarding Process?
NextGen Executive search charges NOTHING to deliver a custom new hire onboarding process with each new hire we place. Our placements average 3.5 years still on the job retention rate. The employee onboarding new hire process will provide a good initial experience for a new hire and lay a strong foundation upon which to build loyalty, inspiration, innovation, and high performance.
Looking to fill a key executive position in your company? Contact us today for a free retained search consultation or download our award winning recruitment process.
Leadership Traits Growing the Leader from Within Yourself
Leadership traits are defined by what we do, not the role we are in. Leadership is action, not a position. Some people in leadership roles are excellent leaders. But too many are bosses, “snoopervisors,” technocrats, bureaucrats, managers, commanders, chiefs, and the like. Whether in enterprise mobility, manufacturing, or consumer devices, strong leaders are well-rounded and constantly expanding their personal leadership traits across these key areas.
Leadership Traits in Functional Management Roles
To lead is to show the way by going in advance. To lead is to guide or direct a course of action. To lead is to influence the behavior or opinion of others. We all need to be leaders, regardless of our formal title or role. This starts with inner leadership traits in self-leadership and moves outward to influence, guide, support, and lead others.The process of becoming a leader is the same as the process of becoming a highly effective human being. Leadership development is personal development. Effective leadership traits ultimately shows itself in what we do “out there.” But it starts “in here.”It would be easy if we could all become leaders by following a simple set of steps. But the journey of personal growth means finding our own way. There are, however, critical areas of personal development based on timeless principles. The distance we need to grow along each of the leadership traits dimensions will differ for each of us, but defining and continually growing along each of these paths is the way of the leader.
Expanding Key Personal Leadership Traits
Strong leaders are well-rounded and constantly expanding their personal leadership traits across many areas, however these areas are key:
- Choose Not to Lose. Whether we choose to focus on our problems or our possibilities is a key leadership issue. When we are faced with obstacles and failure, those with the leadership traits who can overcome adversity and learn from their experiences, turning them into opportunities, are the ones who will be truly successful.
- Focus and Context. The core of my being: This is central to our growth along all the other leadership traits dimensions. Our Focus and Context is shaped by three vital questions: Where am I going? (my vision); What do I believe in? (my principles and values) and; Why do I exist? (my purpose or mission).
- Responsibility for Choices. If it’s to be, it’s up to me: Good leadership traits means accepting responsibility for our choices in life. Leaders realize that life accumulates, that choice more than chance determines their circumstances. They refuse to succumb to the “Victimitus Virus” (“it’s all their fault” and “there’s nothing I can do”).
- Authenticity. Getting real: Leadership isn’t just what we do, it’s something that we are, which then drives what we do. Great leadership traits are authentic, and based on honesty, integrity, and trust. We must ring true to ourselves by exploring our inner space, gathering feedback on our personal behavior, and ensuring consistency with our stated values and principles.
- Passion and Commitment. Beyond near-life experiences: Successful people are energized by a love for what they do because it brings them ever closer to who they are. They have the leadership traits that overcome apathy and cynicism, develop a burning commitment to their cause, and with discipline achieve their dreams and desires.
- Spirit and Meaning. With all my heart and soul: What is the purpose of our work? Of our lives? Material success alone is not enough. Leaders seek within their leadership traits and find something more. In what is too often a mad dash from cradle to grave, we need to take time in work and life to nourish our inner selves.
- Growing and Developing. From phase of life to way of life: The popular goals of security, stability, and predictability are deadly. The closer we get to these dangerous goals, the more our growth is stunted. Good leadership traits will reflect true and lasting security comes from constant growth and development, based on regular reflection and renewal.
- Mobilizing and Energizing. Putting emotions in motion: Leaders don’t motivate with rewards and punishments. Whether at home or in the workplace, they energize people to motivate themselves. Highly effective leaders who possess ethical leadership traits boost the energy of others with their passion and appreciation. They engage people’s hearts as well as their minds.
Effective Leadership Traits Make a Difference
The more the world changes, the more leadership principles stay the same. And effective leadership traits apply to all of us; no matter what role we play in society or organizations. NextGen Global Executive Search uses a proprietary Performance Based Retained Search to recruit exceptional executives with good leadership traits. Contact us today for a free consultation or demo of our proven executive recruitment process.
Job References – Making Calls vs. Automated Software
All companies expect job references, aka professional and employment references to be conducted prior to making an offer of employment or shortly thereafter. Nine times out of ten these are pre-determined references provided by the candidate. Some may well include former bosses, former or current colleagues, and industry references.
That is the real question. Many of these are in fact “personal relationships” where the person(s) providing the employment references will give a glowing reference (call it pre-defined or pre-arranged) that is neither spontaneous and often times misleading. Since I am obligated to deliver a short list of candidates, I do not wait for a pending offer to conduct employment job references and comprehensive background checks.
Most Companies Use Outdated Process for Job References
In the 21st century, we live in a constantly moving and increasingly social media world. Employees’ reputations – both professional and personal – can impact a company’s corporate image, affect how they are viewed by customers and vendors, and can project either a positive or negative social image of the company. With that in mind, the employment verification call that includes employment references aka job references directly from Human Resources or the supervisor of said former employee is useless fodder. Same goes for accepting verbatim without question those provided by the candidate as they are so often former colleagues who are great friends unwilling to look past a biased lense. After identifying a target list of potential candidates through my Rolodex, networking, and referrals, I conduct one to two pre-screening interviews with the objective of understanding the motivations, skills/experience, and accomplishments of those potential candidates. If I am satisfied, they move forward to deeper interviews on my INTERNAL candidate shortlist.
Use Behavioral Analysis Prior to Making Job References Calls
I have the potential shortlisted candidates take an online 10 minute behavioral survey. This customized testing produces a Behavioral Analysis on a candidate’s motivations, values, decision making traits, aptitudes, communications style, and whether they are a Natural Fit with the team AND the role.Once armed with that analysis, I have sufficient data needed to conduct professional job references calls that are relevant to the role itself. Most search firms simply accept employment references provided solely by the candidates. What I ask from each candidate is for two each of the following current or former (within last 5 years) by name, phone, email, title, and relationship as follows: superiors/managers they reported to, subordinates that reported to them, internal customers in their respective positions, external customers, peers or colleagues (professional references NOT like any of the above), and personal and/or communityI go one step further in validating the list of these employment job references requested of the candidates. I research, identify, and cold call former internal/external customers, colleagues, and vendors that were NOT supplied. These validate the professional references the candidate provided while at the same time reveal the best unscripted job references possible.There are a growing number of companies who save time by automating job references checks. Some are pre-defined standard Human Resources types of questions. Others allow you to add your own questions for professional references checking. Thee system sends out emails, the contacts answer the questions online, and you get the results.The problem here is that the human factor does not exist. You cannot hear and ask additional questions based upon what you actually hear and perceive, as well as lacks ability to build a relationship with these professional employment job references. The truth is that I gain new relationships, fresh perspectives, and sometimes additional retained searches by conducting professional job reference calls the best way possible.
Avoid the Risk and Pitfalls of Hiring the Wrong Person
NextGen Global Executive Search has six practice areas that interconnect with each other. These include artificial intelligence and augmented reality, aerospace cabin power systems and military stealth aircraft sensors, cyber security and cyber defense, industrial automation and industrial power systems, medical devices and electronic health records, mobile networks with digital media and wireless systems.
Education Bubble Shortage of US born Engineers for High Tech
It’s a very tough market in electrical and computer engineers for companies that provide security applications, Ai, IoT, and aerospace products. Under rules from FAA and ITAR to FCC to ITAR to DoD, the education bubbleshortage of US born engineers is evident. Requiring US citizenship or green card (permanent residence status), real unemployment nationwide across all industries is still high.
First we need to understand the reality of the education bubble. In the USA, the primary reason we have a decline in economic power is that since the 80s we have moved from real education in science, history, english, writing, and mathematics to “social awareness” and social justice teaching.
As such, we produce a declining number of electrical and computer engineers for four decades – especially USA natives. Want proof the education bubble is worsening? Graduates numbered 14,584 in 2004-05, but declined to 14,209 in 2005-06 and 13,783 in 2006-07. Master’s degrees also dropped in the same time period, recording a significant decrease from 41,087 in 2004-05 to 38,451 in 2005-06, followed by a smaller decrease to 37,320 in 2006-07.
Education Bubble Shortage of US born Engineers is Evident Everywhere
Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs as new foreign student enrollment for 2008-2009 increased by approximately 16.0% from the previous academic year. Since the federal government took over education with the Department of Education in 1979, our elementary schools and high schools have declined and at the university level the education bubble is worse.
The Education Bubble shortage of US born engineers exists due to this social engineering. The education bubble has come about doe to the federal government’s free-spending ways. We re broke as a nation and cannot continue to give student loans to those whose GPA is not deserving. And like my family did for me and my siblings, it is a parent’s sacrifice and savings to put a kid through college. Or going to school at night while working full time like my father did.
Or going via the GI Bill by serving in the military. Or busting your butt in 2 years of community college like my own son did (who then received full scholarships for bachelor and master based upon his grades) who then achieved a PhD in Space Physics. He soundly defeats the issues in the education bubble.
Reasons for the Education Bubble Shortage of US born Engineers
Education should be about Learning and Competition
The education bubble shortage of US born engineers exist due to a failure to deal with real life in educating our children. Just as in life there are winners and losers – and no one should receive a trophy just because they tried. And if you did not win, so what? I was taught to keep trying. And I spent 2-3 hours a day in homework from elementary all the way through high school. In elementary and high school we were encouraged to join clubs and be involved. Me – I chose football and Key Club.
Those two things taught me competition, being a team player, and giving of my time to my community. With fierce competition and high education standards, we had no education bubble. And the focus on high academic standards prepared me for college. Today our schools focus on “feel-good” social engineering and teaching children political and social correctness rather than the 3 Rs and molding children for a bright future. We need to address the fundamentals about the education bubble.
We as citizens and responsible voters can CHANGE the education bubble. Scientists and engineers today make up only 4% of US employment; even doubling their number would in itself have a modest overall impact on the economy. It seems odd to me that for the sake of so-called global diversity, we fail to provide encouragement and programs to elevate our own minority citizens and break the bons of failing inner-city schools to allow these kids to learn STEM. I think you’d be surprised how well inner city children in Chicago can become engineers and scientists if only provided the will and means by our academic elitists.
Rather, the point is that scientists and engineers contribute disproportionately to the creation of jobs for the other 96% of the nation’s workforce by generating knowledge, by innovating, and by establishing new companies based on that knowledge and innovation. We can overcome the education bubble shortage of US born engineers.
First, the outlook for 2018 and beyond is worse unless we dramatically increase H1B visas. It amazes me how often I hear “we can recruit on our own as so many people looking for work” and Hiring Managers who tell me “HR sends them garbage resumes, but the corporate decision makers have their hands tied.”
If you are in artificial intelligence,aerospace or defense systems, cyber security, industrial manufacturing or robotics, mobile digital media, broadband or mobile network operations, wireless infrastructure or IoT data / devices / networks, you often are required by federal regulations and laws to hire US citizens or green cards due to the security clearance needed. More so, when you need vendor-facing, or customer-facing engineers where the candidates in USA must be able to speak plain understandable English, the education bubble shortage of US born engineers is even greater. Oddly we lead in philosophy, history, sports nutrition, social services, marketing, and law degrees. Some of those are needed but we are woefully declining in science and mathematics (ranked 27 in the world and dropping) as the education bubble shortage of US born engineers increases.
Difficult Conversations – Poor Executive Performance ……… and How to Avoid It
Dealing with a poor executive performance can be frustrating. It can be complex and time consuming to make sure you get the right result – an improvement in their performance, or failing that, them being managed out of the organisation in a fair and legal way.It is likely you will meet with a poor executive performance from senior management at least twice; the first time to tell them how their performance is ineffective and set targets for improvement, and the second to review their progress and decide about their future. In practice, you may have several other steps to follow, but the conversations will follow the same pattern, and if you master that pattern, you will find it easier to deal with any conversation about performance effectively.
And what is the pattern? You prepare. You talk. You listen. You consider. You decide. You communicate your decision. In basic terms, it is as simple as that.
Preparation involves making sure you know the Board of Directors policy and what authority they or you must make decisions; you know where the poor executive performance falls short (and you have specific examples), you’ve planned how you want the meeting to go, you’ve given the executive appropriate notice and information in accordance with policy, and you’ve identified a suitable time and venue.
Next, you talk. You may have a predetermined structure to follow or perhaps an agenda you have drawn up, in either case, you need to explain the reason for the meeting and what you want to achieve – to discuss the performance issues and what needs to be done about them. Then you give them the evidence of their performance shortfalls.
Now you give the executive the opportunity to talk and you need to listen. The quickest way to make sure someone doesn’t engage with you is to make them think you’re ignoring what they say. And the only way you are going to get an improvement in performance is if they are working harder, better, or differently. You need their participation. That said, if they refuse to make the effort, then you can still act. It’s not about handing over control. It’s about managing the situation.
It may be that there are some issues that you’re not aware of. They may not have been properly mentored to carry out that objective or task. They may have to rely on a third party which is causing the problems. They may have a health problem that impacts on their ability. There can be as many reasons as there are staff.
They may also get emotional. You might face anger or distress. You can never tell how someone will react until you’re in that situation. Don’t let this side-track you. If they become too emotional to carry on, take a break, but always make sure you get back to the matter at hand. As a rule, having evidence of poor executive performance issues makes it easier to deal with any emotional reactions since it is harder to ignore facts. It also helps you deal with those who might use an emotional reaction as a tactic to delay the discussion.
This leads neatly on to considering the information you now have. No effective Board member makes a business decision without having the relevant facts or without weighing the options. Performance management is as much a business decision as any other issue you will face. Compensation is not the biggest budgetary outgoing, as in reality poor executive performance can cause a damaging ripple or delay in carrying out the business strategy or impact your market share or customer confidence and that can cost not only millions over the course of two or three years. Dealing with poor executive performance issues is a key opportunity to ensure you get the best return on that investment.
Decide What to do about Poor Executive Performance
Now you have the decision to make. You’ll know from your preparation which options are open to you: it may be a verbal or written warning, it may be dismissal. Whatever it is, ensuring that you have been fair and followed policy will mean your decision is more likely to stand if the executive decides to challenge it. It would be unfortunate to end up fighting a legal battle and losing, just for the sake of following the process properly.
Once you have made your decision, you need to communicate it in the most appropriate way. Face-to-face is usually best, with written confirmation including an action plan. This should be given to him/her as quickly as possible to both capitalise on the momentum from your discussion and to reinforce its importance. There should also be clear demarcation between responsibilities, especially since the executive is the only one who can improve their performance.
And how do you know if you get it right? The executive goes away knowing what they should do, how they must do it, when they need to do it by, they have no illusions about the part they must play, they know the support they can expect from you the most senior management and the Board of Directors, and they understand the consequences of not meeting their targets.
And finally, it can be uncomfortable for any CXO or Board member having to have these discussions with one of their executives, but if you do it in a fair, reasonable, and supportive way, you can be their biggest ally, even if, in the end, it doesn’t work out.
How to Avoid Poor Executive Performance
Studies from Leadership IQ, SHRM, and many others have revealed repeatedly that the most failure by executives is lack of interpersonal skills. But really it goes much deeper than that. The executive may have outstanding KPIs and accomplishments throughout their career, but in this instance, seems to be failing. It is not always the individual’s fault as changes to the most senior executive staff or ownership of the company can also be a key reason for poor executive performance.
One of the first things we do at NextGen Global Executive Search is to use scientifically based psychometric surveys of the team an executive role will be working with. Depending on the level of the role, this could include Board members, CXOs, SVP, internal customers, and in the case of a vital role in sales or support, we include key external customers.
The resulting data is compiled from these 5 to 8 surveys into a Composite Team Analysis. It tells us the values and motivations, relational communications style, decision making and management traits of the team.This in turn gives our staff a good idea of the target candidate profile from a team fit perspective. The easy part, as any good retained executive search consultant will tell you, is finding a good role fit takes a lot of hard work and documented proof to insure you have the right shortlist. Even on difficult searches – I’ve had several of “finding the needled in the haystack” where there were a very limited number of individuals who could meet/exceed the role objectives, it’s still the easier part of a search.Before proceeding with cold calling and networking, we develop a Search Strategy that details what we are looking for in role fit, team fit, measurable past KPIS, relevance and depth of industry relationships, investor relationships, market cap, market share, turnaround where appropriate, etc. After all, the entire reason for retaining an executive search consultant is because you want the “A players” brought forth, the 14% of the entire workforce that produces 8 to 10 times more than B players. With CXO and SVP roles, you cannot afford to miss. Same goes for key functional leaders, so that’s not limited to the most senior executives.Now let’s get back to how you can potentially avoid poor executive performance and IMPROVE it. If your retention rate starts to go down, market share or customer support is dropping, revenues are declining, or poor morale seems to be increasing, the worst thing you can do is panic or make staffing decisions based solely on those metrics.
Before doing so, entertain the low cost involved with scientifically based Team Alignment and Individual Team Performance. We’ve done this for several clients – big and small – and what we have found is that some individuals are simply on the wrong team or that the teams themselves were simply improperly aligned to succeed. It goes back to team fit. Each department in any organization has different teams and those teams are made up of individu
als. Having too many similar strengths and weaknesses means a team cannot learn and produce effectively.
The counterbalance of any team is having an effective leader, a coach, a technical or sales mentor, an interpersonal skills expert, a geek, etc. – if properly aligned these seemingly different individuals have the right balance of identified strengths and weaknesses that those traits can be effective through action plans.
In a very short time, realignment and proper positioning of teams can increase production dramatically.
How many of you have ever used this method? For more information, view information and download for free an example Team Staff Alignment Report