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  • Writer's pictureGwenn McGuire

Onboarding for Belonging: A guide to onboarding readiness

Updated: Feb 24, 2023

Oftentimes the race to hire support overshadows onboarding preparation and readiness. Onboarding is not a process to take lightly. The experience you create can make or break the success of your new hire. More than we care to admit, low retention rates are often attributed to poorly planned and outdated onboarding processes. Onboarding should be an intentional focus on new hire retention through preparation and support; It should be a pathway to connect with your new hire to build trust and a safe space.

Onboarding (noun): the action or process of integrating a new employee into an organization or familiarizing a new customer or client with one's products or services.

Do your company's mission, values and vision still ring true? Take a moment to lean back in your chair, cross your arms, wiggle your nose and think on this question for a moment. If these principles, in which your company was founded, no longer fill you with pride like the day you first penned them, onboarding is the least of your worries. Luuucy, you’ve got some thinking to do!

The ability to clearly articulate your company's mission, values and vision will help your new hire understand how their role contributes to the overall company and community success, including their own, and usher them towards belonging quicker. Unpopular corporate opinion here, but no one wants to feel like a production robot chasing output and metrics without a driving factor other than adding to your bottom line. You are hiring this individual for their expertise in a certain field, treat them like the human experts they are.

Let’s dive into the process overall. Have you created a streamlined onboarding process that considers various learning styles?

“OMG, you’re killing me! Building a process around different learning styles? Uggghhhh!”

We know, we know. Issa lot. Stay focused here. There are seven different learning styles: visual, aural, verbal, physical, logical, social and solitary. Building your process to include an equal part of video instruction, reading material, manual performance or tasks and 1:1 or group guidance is a structure to ensure inclusive learning. The process can be demanding. But we are here to commit to building better, safer and more inclusive companies with the whole human in mind. Do the work.

You want a hire that can hit the ground running? Everyone does. Let’s be clear: there is no such hire that’s fit enough to hit the ground running in any organization. While training is always required, taking the time to understand and gel with one's leadership style and management preferences take time. Methods of communication will be tried and tested until you all land on a form that is conducive to both. Ensure that you schedule the capacity to check in with your new hire daily, create space for honest communication and be open to feedback from your hire. They may enlighten you on better practices and systems, or even provide perspectives you have not had the opportunity to wrap your head around.

For those of you with multiple hires under your belt, take the time to schedule a group call, introducing the new hire to the team. Allow your teammates to introduce themselves separately, speak about their expertise and their lane of genius, have them share how both positions work in tandem and the contribution of the new hires position to the success of their teammates. This way the new hire has a personalized visual of hierarchy and they understand how all pieces fit together for the betterment of the organization, community and team.

As your company grows, processes and training should grow in parallel. And quite frankly, so should you as a leader. Be open to personal growth alongside professional development. Hiring and onboarding are half the battle, showing them how to care and love your organization the way you do is where candor, transparency and vulnerability as a leader is showcased.

You’ve got this! We’re rooting for you!

Don’t got this? Reach out to our team at for review, creation, revitalization and implementation of your onboarding process. We’ve got you.

Creating safer spaces,



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