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How to embarrass yourself in front of new staff


We’ve all had first day horror stories – no desk, no phone, no computer access and no sign of the person who lured you into the organisation with promises of quick promotion or an inclusive working culture.

As someone’s manager, it’s easy to overlook these things as little things.

That would be wrong.

Starting a new job is like going out on a first date. Your new employee is sizing you up. He is trying to decide whether there’s enough chemistry to write off those workplace wobbles as funny first date fumbles, or whether what they are really seeing are warnings signs pointing to worse things to come.

Here are the 12 quickest ways to breach trust with your new employees (and embarrass yourself, and your organisation.

  1. Induction: Skip it. Tell them to get onto IT and connect up the computer themselves.
  2. Have an induction… eventually.
  3. Values: Make it clear that these are HR waffle and nobody takes them seriously.
  4. Safety induction: Tell them they only need to wear their protective equipment when senior management are around.
  5. Salary: Offer them X in the interview, and state something else on their letter of offer. Better still, neglect to tell them this figure includes super. Watch what happens at the first pay cycle.
  6. Technology: Offer them a new mobile phone and laptop or iPad in the interview. Give them your old one instead and keep the new one.
  7. Accuracy of the job: Leave out the parts of the job people dislike when you describe it at interview. When they complain about it, ask them if they don’t think they are up to the job.
  8. Promotional promises: Create an impression in interview that they are your succession plan. Don’t tell them you are not going actually going anywhere.
  9. Physical location: In interview, show them the renovated part of the office. Once they start the job show them their real workspace at the end of the office with no natural light and a desk that shakes.
  10. Second best: When you introduce them on day one, let everyone know that they are the person who said yes to the job because your first choice said no to it.
  11. Forget about being there when they start: Take annual leave instead.
  12. Probation: Extend the three months to six months without telling them.

Do you know how this can make your employee feel? Most employers do not have a clue.

What has been your greatest employee nightmare? Or, as a boss, have you ever committed any of these sins?

Anthony Sork is the creator of the Employment Attachment Inventory (EAI). The world first, internationally patented business instrument used by leading organisations to reduce attrition and increase performance of new employees. To learn more, visit the employee attachment blog. Or check out the induction tips. Visit: http://employeeattachment.com