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Work Environment

Onboarding, C-Level

Tips for Managing the Executive Onboarding Journey

By Career Guidance, Corporate Culture, Hiring Strategies, LeadershipNo Comments

You may be surprised to learn that many executives in the United States don’t undergo formal onboarding when they begin a job. This lack of support may explain why 40% of new leaders leave within the first two years of starting a new job. These tips can help improve the executive onboarding journey.

Communication about Roles and Expectations

New hires are unlikely to succeed without clear and transparent expectations. While new leaders need to understand their responsibilities clearly, they especially need to know what to expect from their team members, peers, and mentors. Once hired, leaders will have to meet and interact with many new people. The more they know about all these individuals, the better off they are. Communicating these expectations allows hires to prepare, making good impressions early on, and starting on the right foot.

Education about Company Goals and Values

One of the main reasons so many leaders struggles when they start a new job is that they don’t know enough about its goals and values. An effective onboarding strategy for leaders will allow hires to gain in-depth knowledge about what is important to the company. This will help the hire feel more connected to the organization and give them a sense of purpose.

Education about Internal Processes

Even if they held a similar position at a different company, your organization’s internal process might differ drastically from what the new hire is used to. This is one reason starting a new job in a position of leadership can be overwhelming. As you develop your onboarding strategy, make sure to identify key aspects of your company’s internal process that new hires will benefit from knowing about. It is also important to check in with new hires regularly to make sure they are not confused about any internal process. Regular check-ins are crucial in monitoring how well hires adjust to their new work environment. 

Integration into the Management Team

One of the hardest aspects of starting a new job is integrating into the team. This can be even harder at the executive level because the team is smaller. Team building activities are a key part of any executive onboarding strategy. The new hire needs chances to socialize with other executives and start to build a relationship with them. This will allow the team to develop mutual trust, which is of great importance at the executive level. Any person in a leadership position who feels like an outsider will not stay long, so integration into the management team has to be a top priority for new hires.

Beginning a job as part of the C-suite isn’t easy. New hires are given a lot of responsibility early on and have to adjust to a new culture, new company processes, new team members, and so much more. Moreover, many don’t receive a real onboarding experience. To improve the chances that a hire will succeed as an executive, communicate clear expectations, educate them about company goals and internal processes, and integrate them into the management team early on in the process.

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Diversity, Inclusion

DEI Initiatives that Have Been Making a Difference

By Career Guidance, Corporate Culture, Industry TrendsNo Comments

As is common in much of the corporate world, C-level support has historically lacked diversity and inclusion. As social awareness has increased in recent years, many organizations have taken actions that have made a real difference in making the C-suite more equitable.

Compile and Analyze Data

When it comes to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, knowledge is power. A company can’t improve its diversity and inclusivity without first understanding how diverse the organization is in practice. One of the most important initiatives one can take is collecting data that can be analyzed continuously. See how the composition of your team compares to other companies in your industry and the overall labor force. Pay close attention to key diversity categories, such as age, ability, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, generation, learning styles, race, language is spoken, etc. By collecting data and comparing it to other companies and your own organizational goals, you will be able to identify problem areas and hold yourself accountable for the goals you set

Identify Problems and Set Clear Goals

By collecting lots of data, you will have the resources you need to identify where you fall short as an organization in diversity and inclusion. Look beyond simple statistics to examine how diverse groups are represented within specific departments and job titles. For example, even if fifty percent of your employees are female, your organization isn’t inclusive if men fill all the leadership positions. In addition, survey individual employees to see if they feel their work environment is inclusive. This can help you identify less obvious problem areas. Once you identify specific problems within your organization that hold you back from being inclusive, you can begin to set goals. Identify what needs to change and develop an action-based plan to move your company to where it needs to be. The plan should address aspects of the organization like hiring practices, job descriptions, company culture, and company policies.

Involve Leadership and Management

Leaders who have decision-making power must be involved in any effective DEI strategy. You must also involve line managers from the beginning of the process. Without the help of leadership, there is no way to make real changes in hiring practices and company policies. Involving line managers is also important because they have a better understanding of what the company’s day-to-day culture looks like and can help ensure that the DEI goals the organization set match up with the reality of the workplace.

Consider Technology and Its Biases

 Technology is one area that diversity committees often overlook. For example, the technology used to hire candidates and evaluate employee performance can rely on data biased against specific minority groups. This bias can range from steering job ads toward certain candidates to flagging candidates for word choice. Thus, it is important to regularly assess the technology used in your hiring and evaluation processes to ensure they do not affect anyone group in an inequitable or discriminatory way. Data, questions, and criteria used to evaluate candidates and employees should be fair and should use measures that are relevant indicators of performance for a given role.

Many companies are actively working on improving the diversity, inclusivity, and equity of their organizations. Strategies that focus on collecting and analyzing diversity metrics, setting clear and measurable goals, involving leadership and line manager, and cutting out biases and technology can make a real difference in improving the inclusivity of your organization.

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Company Culture, Hybrid Work Environment

Maintain Company Culture in a Hybrid Work Environment

By Career Guidance, Corporate Culture, Industry TrendsNo Comments

Many organizations transitioned to alternative working arrangements during the pandemic to reduce the number of people in the office and meet social distancing requirements. Hybrid workplace models continue to trend as some high-profile companies announced that they would be allowing employees to work wherever they want. From employee safety to increased productivity, there are plenty of advantages associated with hybrid work environments. But, if work models like this are left unchecked, they present some unique challenges too. For instance, more companies are struggling to maintain employee morale because they feel disconnected from their colleagues and their purpose. Employee burnout is becoming more prevalent as a result. Fortunately, it’s still possible to maintain company culture in a hybrid work environment with these tips.


Promote a Sense of Shared Purpose

A common concern among many remote employees is the lack of teamwork and shared energy toward overall goals. Business leaders can help their teams overcome this by having regular discussions about shared purpose and how both individual and team contributions are connected to the success of a project. Hybrid workforces need frequent reminders concerning mutual dependencies while avoiding the temptation to micromanage. Instead, leaders should provide remote employees with the right tools and information required to complete work assignments. A sense of shared purpose can still be communicated through email, texts, video conferencing, etc.


Hold Employees Accountable for Results

One of the best ways to remind employees that their work matters is to hold them accountable even when working outside of the traditional office setting. It’s important to remind people that their work matters regardless of where it’s being done. The most successful hybrid work environments will have a good balance of empathetic management and accountability.


Manage Conflict Productively

It can be challenging to interpret people’s emotions during video calls, leading to even more conflict among remote employees. Disagreements are bound to happen in any work environment, but if leaders are proactive about keeping them respectful, then it helps create a positive work culture. Leaders today should encourage differences of opinions and have some standard operating procedures in place for conflicts.


Keep the Lines of Communication Open

Transparent, open communication is the key to maintaining a positive hybrid work environment. Since some employees miss out on the latest updates, leaders have to focus more on keeping everybody in the loop by sending out regular newsletters, updating social media accounts, sharing industry trends, etc.


Successful hybrid work models can require fine-tuning along the way. But, if you’re proactive about promoting a sense of shared purpose, managing conflict productively, and holding employees accountable, then a positive culture is inevitable.

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