Video lessons: Making the first 90 days count (Proceedings)


10 ways to make new associates feel welcome

10 ways to make new associates feel welcome

  • R-e-s-p-e-c-t

It's not just a word, it's what you do. Treat them with respect and model the behavior you expect from them with every employee. Part of respect is praise and feedback; let them know in public when they do well and in private when there's a concern.

  • Leadership

Associates want to know they are on the right path and there is a plan in the practice for moving forward. They want to belong to something bigger than themselves and know that someone they can trust is in charge.

  • Empowerment

Allow your Associates to make decisions and to share their ideas with you. While they may not always make the right decisions, they need to know you will support them when needed. Consider what you learned when you made a mistake and encourage them to make decisions.

  • Make it fit

Send the new associate out to lunch with different departments in the hospital; one day with the veterinary technicians, one day with the receptionists and then lunch with the kennel and exam room teams. Have them talk about the successes of the practice and how we make a difference in the lives of pets every day.

  • Open it up

Have an open house or reception and invite your best clients to meet the new associate. Nothing says welcome like clients who will tell your new employee how wonderful the practice is from the client's point of view.

  • Expectations

Ask them what their expectations are in an employer. Let them know clearly how they will be evaluated and the timeline for performance evaluations.

  • Be proud

Put an ad in the paper welcoming the new associate. Create a flyer that you can give to clients in the practice telling them about the wonderful addition to the practice. Post their picture and biography in the exam rooms.

  • Mentor

Assign a mentor, someone who can assist them, meet with them regularly and help them to integrate into the practice.

  • Time

Set up regular times to meet and talk about cases, comments, and concerns. Encourage the new associate to ask questions when they have them, but also make time so you can demonstrate your commitment to them; and remember, you can't change the tire at 40 mph, slow down and take the time to talk about it.

  • Make sure there are no misunderstandings

Everything should be put in writing, make sure you have an employment contract, job description and policy manual.  Go over these with your new associate.

  • Walk your talk

Make sure you set the example, not only medically but in your actions. Be to meetings on time, treat other employees with respect, get to work on time. Remember that any successful business starts from the top.

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