It doesn’t take much to show employees you care

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The picture on LinkedIn of the welcome gifts for a new employee immediately went viral. On her desk was a new laptop, a shirt, plus a range of other goodies that surprised the hell out of her. Do you think she felt welcome and made a good choice?

Gallup estimated that almost 85% of employees are not engaged at work. Half of all new hires feel they “made a mistake” in accepting a position at a new company even with substantial salary increases. What we have here is a failure to communicate.

Making employees feel welcome is not the job of employee orientation, it’s the job of HR people. I have heard stories about new hires waiting in the lobby for hours while HR people gather the correct paperwork and arrange for his/her manager to welcome them. That is totally unacceptable.

Making new, and current employees, feel wanted is the responsibility of every manager and HR person but it rarely happens. Why? Because of the revolving door mentality. Too many companies feel they are in a position of power and if an employee doesn’t like it there it’s easy to get someone else. That’s the mentality that ruins companies.

At a minimum all new employees should receive a hero’s welcome with some goodies like tee shirts, Starbucks coffee and other gifts that say “we’re glad you’re here”.

At this time of year, rather than just wish employees a Merry Christmas, would it really break the budget to spend some money to say “thank you” for all the work you have done this year? Yet the idea of a Christmas Bonus lives only in the spirit of Christmas past.

We all want to feel wanted and needed, but too often HR and managers forget this. They feel your paycheck is your reward, but that thinking is myopic and a path to retaining the wrong people.

It’s time to show new hires and current employees you care. Who will be the first to have the courage to say “we need to do this”?

Originally published at on December 16, 2016.

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