Contrary to what some people believe, tossing newly hired employees into the deep end isn’t always the best training method.
The most successful workers out there often have access to structured training, great mentors, and room to make mistakes with a safety net under them. It’s the best way to maintain their confidence and motivation as they learn the ropes of your business.
Unfortunately, this arrangement isn’t always available, especially for understaffed businesses. And the challenges for them become increasingly clear during the holiday season when seasonal hires join the team. Getting these individuals trained and up to speed for one of the busiest times of year isn’t exactly a walk in the park.
The best way to combat this? Advance planning. Here’s how to set your holiday team up for success!
Pick the right skills
When hiring seasonal workers, managers often look for people who have related experience in similar roles to reduce the amount of technical training needed. However, this won’t matter so much if they’re not a fast learner! Prioritize individuals who are resourceful and think on their feet – they’re the ones who will pick up your training quickly and shine on their shifts.
Know their role
Seasonal hiring isn’t just about having extra hands available for work – if that’s your mentality, you’ll quickly find out the meaning of “too many cooks in the kitchen”. It’s important to hire with a purpose and assigned tasks in mind. There won’t be time to train a jack of all trades, so it’s better to have them specialize in select areas.
One of the biggest time-wasters on the job? Confusion. Ensure that your hires know exactly what they’re doing and who to approach with questions. Often, new employees will hesitate to ask their coworkers about their work, especially when everyone has their hands full! Create an environment where it’s okay to ask questions and make mistakes by addressing it on day one.
Create a buddy system
With a large number of tasks on your plate, you’re probably stretched too thin to answer all the questions your new hires have (that’s a full-time job in itself!). The “buddy system” works great here – assign each new employee an experienced partner who can support them and encourage them outside of structured training.
Motivate, motivate, motivate!
The first few days of training can be challenging, and even downright frustrating for new hires. Help lift your team’s spirits with words of encouragement, fun refreshments, and maybe even a little social time. Even if your new hires are temporary, they’re still a part of your work family for the season!