Having a genuine one-on-one conversation with your new hire is the best way to get to know them. Often the onboarding process for a new hire includes a welcome message and that is it, then it is right to work. Although that is not ideal, that is okay as long as that is not the last time you talk to your new hire. Make sure you make the time, early on, to schedule a meeting with just the two of you and have a conversation. Ask them questions about their goals, personal life, vision for the company, and how they like to be managed. The goal is to make it feel less like a meeting and more like a conversation.
Question 1: What or who motivates you to be the best version of yourself?
According to corporate management expert Joan Lloyd, employees often want to be asked about their lives outside of the workplace. It also shows your new employee that you value them as an individual and not just as a worker by asking them about themselves.
So do not be afraid to get a little personal, but not too personal. You do not want your new hire to feel like they are being interrogated. Instead, focus on questions that identify how your new hire’s personal life overlaps with and influences their work.
Question 2: What is one of your long term goals? How can we help you achieve it?
Once you have a sense of what makes them tick, it is time to uncover their goals and motivations. After you find out some of their goals, ask them how you can help them achieve those goals.
These questions allow your new hire to open up to you even more and gives you insight into their motivations.
Question 3: How do you prefer to receive constructive feedback?
Though you may not have much feedback to give a new employee, you do want to gauge their preferences surrounding feedback. This question gives your new hire the opportunity to let you know the type of feedback that works best for them. This question also gives you the opportunity to let your new hire know that feedback is a two-way street and that you welcome their thoughts on your management.
Question 4: What would you do differently if you were me?
New employees often come into a company with a much broader vantage point than those already working there, allowing them to see the company’s strengths and weaknesses. This is a very important perspective to get and lets your new hire know that you value their thoughts and opinions.
This will also give you insight into what your new hire may need more of, like direction, attention, etc.
These questions are not the only questions you should be asking your new employee during your first meeting, but these are some of the most important. These questions give you insight into your new hire’s goals, personal life, vision for the company, and how they like to be managed. All things you need to know to better understand your new hire. So make sure you ask these questions and more!