This means nothing to me…

This is the seventh and final post in a series of blogs discussing the concept of motivation and what its sources might be. Its prompted by a conversation I had with Bee Heller, from The Pioneers. Bee asserts that there are seven different sources of motivation, and is writing about each of them on The Pioneers website. 

We decided I’d write a commentary piece about each one on my own blog, and look at what’s happened in organisations I’ve worked in and with – whether the source of motivation Bee’s blog discussed has been used to good effect or been neglected; what’s worked well in terms of creating an environment that enhances that motivation; and what’s not worked so well or undermined that motivation for people? 

Here’s Bee’s blog on meaning. In it, she suggests that employee retention becomes much easier when organisations provide a sense of meaning for their work, and contrasts two differing ways of doing this – one overarching purpose, which she says has good short term effects but potentially damaging long term effects; and a pluralistic approach where lots of different ways of doing meaningful work are encouraged, which she suggests is a better long term approach. 

I agree in part with Bees thoughts. I certainly agree meaningful work is a source of motivation and can therefore help with employee retention. But I’m less certain that having one overarching purpose in an organisation is only a short term fix, and that a pluralistic approach is therefore the best way.

I have usually been able to find meaning in what I do. I’ve often recounted the story of telling my 3 year old daughter that my job was to help people be happy at work, and I guess that’s what my meaning and overarching purpose is. When I’ve worked in places where I’ve felt a connection it’s usually because the organisation has a similar ethos and let’s me do my thing.

It’s also why I often dislike doing operational HR activities as, although they’re needed, they aren’t necessarily linked to my purpose, although may well have a contributory hygiene factor.

I was in my favourite job for 11 years. This was an organisation that had a purpose to improve the lives of its customers, and that resonated so much with me that we just understood each other and could see common ground. I did my thing there for 11 years before the organisational purpose changed and I felt I no longer had that connection, and left. 

I have been in other jobs where the organisation and I had a complete disconnect about what they saw me doing and what I felt was right to do, where my role was expected to be about compliance and regulation, and no focus given to helping people feel happy at work. I have never lasted long in such places. 

I have had various bits of freelance work over the years too, and the beauty of that is that I could pick and choose work that matched my purpose. It’s no surprise that I got a lot of energy out of those bits of work and consider them some of my best work too. 

So when I get meaning from an organisation, I stay. In that sense I agree with Bee.  The search for meaning is a motivating factor, and has been a motivating factor in my leaving some roles. 

I don’t necessarily agree that the overarching unitary purpose is only a short term thing though. Uber, cited as an example, are perhaps the exception rather than the rule and I know many organisations who have maintained their unitary purpose successfully – I would suggest that the growth of Uber brought with it people whose purposes didn’t match the original meaning, and this contributed to what has happened. Had they got their recruitment right, and found people whose meaning matched their own, what did happen might never have. 

A pluralistic approach can have many benefits, as Bee does suggest, and I’ve seen this work also. But an organisation needs to have sufficient size and maturity to cope with and make the best of this. It’s no better or worse than the unitary approach, just different. 

Ultimately though, my own sense of meaning comes from helping people to be happy, whether that be through my HR work, my PT stuff, and any voluntary or freelance work I do also. It can be a motivating factor in getting me to stay at places, and getting me to leave places. 

It is possibly also why my ideal jobs are (or would have been) a professional wrestler or a Man Utd footballer, as both have immense potential to create happiness for people. 

Somehow I ended up in HR instead. But I still hope. 

Till next time…

Gary

Ps in other news, I now have a 16 year old son who is technically and in some regards legally an adult. This makes me feel very old. 

A Perfect Day

Last week I did an Ignite talk at #cipdnap17 on the subject of Work Life Balance and how I go about creating A Perfect Day. Given that it is, by coincidence, Go Home On Time Day on 21 June, the timing seems apt to expand on this. 

I’m grateful to Gemma Dale for publishing her own excellent blog on this subject which made me think about writing this one. 

Read hers, then come straight back here. I’ll wait. 

Done? Good. 

My Ignite talk was again delivered as a rhyme, and I really enjoyed doing it. I drew some inspiration not just for the talk but for my whole approach to work life balance from Nigel Marsh’s excellent TED talk on the subject some years ago.

My talk was filmed and you can watch it here if you like. 

In it, I’m making, in a fairly haphazard way, a few key points which I’ll expand on here. 

1. That there is something that approximates a perfect day for everyone, but it is a rare and unusual thing. Too often we don’t make efforts to create it, as we are too busy or (worse) don’t realise what we need or (even worse) do realise but do nothing about it. My point was that by making some very small adjustments to your day, and helping others to do the same, our organisations and our families can reap huge rewards. 

2. In HR we could take a leading role in educating managers and employees on the benefits of flexibility. However this doesn’t often seem to happen, and even when leading by example I’ve encountered suspicion and mistrust. But our ability to influence is there and should be used. 

3. The demands of modern family life are often largely incompatible with the demands of the traditional working day and traditional organisation. So one of these sets of demands has to change, and the only one we in HR can realistically influence on behalf of others is the latter. But again by leading by example we can show people how to manage the demands of both. 

4. Organisations who tell their staff how to work, how to dress, when to take lunch and for how long, what hours to work etc are going about it all in the wrong way. They can’t unlock the engagement and discretionary effort they want from their staff unless they change. Too many organisations judge people by how many hours they are sat at their desk, and not by the quality of output they deliver. If someone wants to take an hour or so off to do the school run and help their kids with their homework, and then will log on late at night and catch up, does it really matter as long as their work is done?

5. Working in the evening or at weekends is a personal choice and not one that should be encouraged or expected by organisations. Too many see emails sent late at night or at weekends as a sign of being some kind of workplace hero, as working harder or more than someone else. If you want to do it, fine – but set your emails to send first thing in the morning so you don’t impose your lifestyle and working patterns on others. 

6. You are never too busy to spend time building working and family relationships and a coffee catch-up with someone is time well spent no matter what else you need to be doing. Telling someone you’re too busy to grab a coffee says less about your workload and more about you as a human being.

So if it’s Go Home On Time Day, I suppose this will mean different things to different people. 

And that’s ok, because everyone’s perfect day is different. Everyone’s perception of work life balance is also different. 

But in organisations, as HR professionals, we need to be encouraging people to explore what it means for them. To adopt a trial and error approach and, as I’ve mentioned before, present successive drafts of themselves. 

We shouldn’t judge anyone for trying to get themselves balanced. 

Till next time. 

Gary 

PS in other news, I’ve recently built a large climbing frame. I am reminded why I hate DIY and also how poor I am at it. I would happily outsource all of this if I could. And I have a new shed to build next…

I’m only human, after all

This blog is about criticism, both public and private, and its effects on people. It is prompted by some unusual but repeated public criticism of his players by Jose Mourinho, which seems to be a style he believes is both appropriate and effective. 

Let’s examine this. 

I should start by saying, again, that I’m a United fan, so I’ve been watching this closely. I’ve long admired Mourinho before he came to United last summer and it’s been interesting to see his approach to man management. 

In his short tenure as United manager, he has used public criticism and also ostracism to attempt to motivate and manage certain players. 

First Schweinsteiger was ostracised and made to train with the reserves, but not allowed to leave the club. Later, when he had been readmitted to the fold and then allowed to leave, Mourinho expressed regret at the way he had treated Schweinsteiger, but that didn’t stop him doing it in the first place. Now, if this was a “real” workplace, this would be deemed bullying, and possibly leading to constructive dismissal when the player left. 

Of course, football isn’t real, but let’s go on. 

Then Mkhitaryan suffered some of the same treatment but fairly soon after got back in the team and began to play very well indeed. Mourinho took credit for this, saying it took him some time to help Mkhitaryan to learn how to play in this country. In a real workplace, this may also be bullying and possibly racial discrimination too, but of course football exists in its own bubble. 

Then lately both Rashford and Martial have come under fire for their goal scoring records. Rashford has responded with some of his best performances of the season and a few goals, but Martial is still under fire and Mourinho says he listens too much to his agent (union rep perhaps?) and not enough to him. This could be considered good performance management but for the public nature of it, and as such it may be considered bullying too. 

Finally, recently Shaw has been heavily criticised for his commitment and performance, again in public. But Shaw has also responded with some better performances and has been “rewarded” with public praise. 

I could go on. 

Others, he has largely ignored in public, as he feels they give him what he wants and “get him”. 

I think treatment like this is more common than we realise in organisations. I’ve come across examples in my HR career, and have had friends and family tell me stories that would have made my hair stand on end, if I had any. But the difference is that this is usually in private. 

The public nature of the Mourinho criticism has made me wonder though. 

It obviously gets some results, as some players have demonstrated. 

So does the end justify the means?

Is public criticism acceptable if the recipient takes it on board and responds with increased performance levels?

I’m not so sure. 

I have come across semi-public criticism of employees in the past myself and have always been shocked at this. In some cases it has been, like with Mourinho, one of the most senior people in the organisation being critical of an individual in front of others (if not quite as public as Mourinho), but in none of the cases I’ve personally witnessed has the individual managed to turn things around and publicly respond with better performances. In all cases the criticism has been too much and they’ve parted company with the organisation. 

And that’s sad. Not because they didn’t respond in that way, but because there was really no way they could. Real people don’t exist in the professional football bubble. When we are criticised, particularly when unjustified and especially in a public way, we react badly in most cases. 

In most cases, we can’t deal with it. Criticism, when doled out from a very senior person in a semi public manner, removes most of the motivators from Herzbergs model and reduces the positive effects of any hygiene factors too. It’s a massive demotivator, and more so when the individual feels it’s unjustified and also, because of the respective positions in the organisation, feels they can’t respond. 

So why does Mourinho feel he can get away with it, and often does? Is it because of the results it seems to get?

I’m at a loss to explain it. 

But the criticism must hurt those who receive it. Whenever I’m criticised, be it in my personal or professional life (and believe it or not, I am not infallible) I will always hurt inside, but the way I can tell if the criticism has any merit is the depth of emotions it triggers in me. If I have a strong emotional reaction and keep thinking about it, it usually means there was something to the criticism and I can usually use that as fuel to change something. Is that what Shaw, Rashford and others have felt and done? But if the criticism is unjustified or inaccurate, I deal with it in different ways and have a different reaction to it, sometimes involving trying to show the person delivering it why and how they are wrong, which can often backfire on me. 

I told you I’m not infallible. 

I’m only human, after all, as the song goes. 

And so is everyone else, so if criticism must be given out, and there are sometimes really good reasons why it should, managers should make sure they do so one on one, not in public, base it on the facts so that it is accurate and not subjective, and also be aware of how individuals may respond differently to such comments. Regardless, criticism has a major impact on employee engagement for that individual employee, and therefore must be taken seriously by organisations. 

As for Mourinho and his man management tactics, they seem to be working. He’s likely to get away with it. And sadly, most managers doing things like this will also get away with it. 

It’s up to us in HR to make sure managers know it’s not acceptable to treat people in this way, and to provide guidance on how to treat people as human beings. 

Till next time. 

Gary

PS all quotes now in for our building work and mortgage information obtained too. Approaching decision time about whether to go ahead with it…

Man (Utd) Flu

I support Manchester United, and watched the game vs Chelsea this week. United had striker problems, and it was reported we were short because Rooney and Martial were injured, Ibrahimovic was suspended and Rashford was ill. 

But then Rashford made some kind of recovery during the day, made it from Manchester to London, and played (and played OK too). So was he ill in the first place or was it mind games from Jose Mourinho? Let’s assume he WAS ill and let’s explore the implications of this. 

So he’s ill and notifies his employer that he can’t come to work that day. One of two things has then happened. Either a) during the day he has recovered sufficiently to come into work later on or b) his employer has got back in touch, explained how desperate they are, and asked him to come in despite being ill. 

If the former happened, then this shows great flexibility on the part of both employer and employee. 

Or does it?

You’d have to question whether Rashford was, initially, really as ill as he reported if later on he could feel better enough to work. Did he overreact initially? Was this a case of the Man Flu? Or Man Utd Flu?

But also, just as illness can come on one suddenly, it can also lift suddenly, and both sides can be applauded for having the flexibility to review the original “off sick today” decision. This is something I think all employers should do. 

My own approach, based on a total of zero sick days across my entire working life, is that there shouldn’t be an approach of all or nothing when a person is ill. If someone is not going to be able to do 100% of their duties, then it’s preferable, in my view, if they do even 10% as that’s better than 0%. 

Of course there are complications in that some illnesses are best kept out of the workplace for fear of spreading to healthy workers, but assuming the individual can work remotely or across a different timespan then this kind of flexibility should be encouraged. So if an individual like Rashford has been ill over the weekend and needs a few extra hours to sleep it off before coming into work, but is willing to work later on and do less than 100% of his normal duties, then I say that’s a good thing and better than him taking the whole day off sick and doing 0%. 

Recently someone I know was quite ill and could potentially have worked from home but would have had to go into the office to collect something first, and didn’t want to do that because of how it would have looked. That says there’s something about a culture of presenteeism that still needs to be tackled. The same person also felt that they COULD work in between bouts of being ill and confined to the bathroom, but felt that this sporadic approach to working was not helpful to the organisation and chose to take the entire day off sick as a result. Again, this says something about individual and organisational approaches to work that only working 7-8 hours/day in one go is considered “work”. 

Here’s the thing. It’s not the only way. 

And what if the latter scenario about Rashford is true, in that he was pressured by his employer to come in because they were desperate?

If the employer did ask Rashford to reconsider his “off sick” stance, which he obviously did, then this may be considered bullying and potentially something that could contribute to a deterioration in Rashford’s health in that he was asked to come in and perform at a very high level despite feeling ill which could have made him much worse. 

But, possibly, it also says something about employee engagement and openness in the workplace in that the employer and employee could have adult-adult conversations about choices and flexibility, and the employee felt passionate enough and connected enough to his organisations goals that he could be persuaded to come in despite feeling ill. 

Perhaps we will never know the full story. 

I do think that organisations should be able to have grown up conversations with their staff without that being considered undue pressure or bullying, but also that both sides should build in enough flexibility and understanding in their relationship that occasional illnesses, and different ideas on what constitutes work under “normal” and “unusual” circumstances. 

Ultimately, Rashford reconsidered his decision, played, but United lost, so perhaps all this is for naught if the organisation doesn’t achieve its specific goals from asking the employee to reconsider…

Something to think about. 

Oh and another thing. If you are ill, talk about it in grown up terms. You are not “an ickle bit poorly”.  Small children get “an ickle bit poorly”. Adults do not. Adults get ill. Sorry to rant but one manager I used to work with would regularly use this phrase to describe themselves and their team when unwell. 

Till next time…

Gary

Ps in other news, my PT course is going well. I passed the L2 Gym Instructing course and am halfway through the L3 Personal Trainer element now. It is really brilliant and I’m learning loads about nutrition, anatomy and physiology and how to structure a training programme. I’ve got great people who’ve volunteered to help me throughout and I’m able to apply my learning on both their and my own training. Watch this space for further developments.

Gimme some credit

I have a concept in my head of imaginary credit accounts that regulate the employment relationship.  Initially I thought that each employee had an account with their employer, which they could draw on when required – but the more I think about it it goes two ways, and the employer has an account with each employee which they too can draw upon.

Let’s explore this.

Today it has been Flexible Working Awareness Day.  I blogged HERE on this subject last month and started thinking why FW needed an awareness day, realising that there were still barriers to it being widespread.


And then I noticed THIS ARTICLE in the Independent quoting a CIPD survey on job satisfaction – and there were lots of statistics quoted in the article and survey that suggest job satisfaction is falling, as is employee engagement.  This was interesting to note on FW Awareness Day.

So I thought about the links between the two ideas and returned to an old concept I’ve had and have explained to leaders in several organisations along with HR staff – mental credit accounts.

Here’s how they work.

I’m Joe Bloggs, and I work for Company X.  I’ve been troublesome for a while – minor performance issues, sickness absence now and again, and some behavioural issues as well.  My credit account with my employer is in fact NOT in credit, its in debit.  I have taken far more from the employment relationship account than my employer initially deposited into the account.

And the converse…

I’m Jane Smith, and I work for Company X too.  I’ve been a happy employee for a while – no performance issues, no notable sickness absence (or none at all), and no behavioural issues.  My credit account with my employer IS in credit, and I have deposited more into the account than my employer initially put in.
So imagine how it works in practice:

– Joe and Jane both have to take time off to recuperate from a planned operation.  They are likely to be off 8 – 10 weeks.  Given Joe’s history you’ll likely see this as a continuation of his bad behaviour (rightly or wrongly, because he’s in debit), whereas for Jane you’ll likely wish to support her as much as possible – because she’s in credit.
– Joe and Jane both have caring responsibilities, and both tell you they need to take occasional time off with a sickly child, often at short notice.  Again, you’ll view Joe’s notification in a different light than Jane’s
– Joe and Jane put in a request to do an MA in Feng Shui, fully funded by you (and Feng Shui is nothing to do with your business).  You’d likely laugh Joe’s out of court, but you might give serious consideration to Jane’s.

And it works in reverse too.

I’m John Smith and I work for Company G.  The company has always treated me fairly, given me flexibility, empowerment, involved me, supported me and developed me – I’m going to run through a minefield for this employer if they need me to, as they’re in credit with me.

And the flipside.

I’m still John Smith and my Company G merges with Company H to form a new entity.  The leadership changes and in essence its a new company.  I don’t think I’m being treated fairly, I’m not empowered any more and I don’t feel supported or involved in the new organisation.  I’d just as soon see the company go into liquidation than help it out, as they’re in debit with me.

Its a similar concept to falling in and out of love with someone, and the idea of falling out of love with an organisation is something I’m going to blog on separately in the future.

Why is this of relevance today?

Well, the reason why FW has an Awareness Day and the low levels of job satisfaction is because there is too much debit out there.  Employers are in debit with employees so job satisfaction is low, and employees are in debit with employers so the ability to work flexibly isn’t as prevalent as it could be.

So seeing both things publicised reminded me of my oft-used concept.  I’ve mentioned it to leaders in a few different organisations to help them deal with tricky people issues.  I’ve mentioned it to HR teams I’ve led to help them understand why consistency is important, but not always achievable or desirable, and its because of the different amounts people hold in their accounts with the employer.

One of the best examples I can give of drawing on one’s credit balance is my own.  

I had worked for a particular organisation for 4 years, working hard, being there and not off sick, helping the organisation to develop and driving it forward with new ideas.  I made mistakes, lots of them, but I owned up to them and learnt from them and developed good relationships with the Chief Executive and Directors who knew that I was developing and enthusiastic, and was committed to the success of the organisation.

And then my (first) marriage fell apart and I went through a very painful split and divorce process.

I turned up at work one day and decided to tell the Chief Executive.  I had made up my mind that this organisation was in credit with me and I owed it to them to keep turning up for work and not go off sick with stress (plus, home was the last place I wanted to be).  I needed to tell the Chief what was going on though as I knew my performance was already suffering, and my behaviour was unpredictable.


He was fine with it.  In fact, more than fine.  He told me to just keep turning up and he would support me and cover for me, and no matter how long my “dip” lasted he didn’t mind.

I had told him years before of my concept of credit accounts and to my surprise, he quoted it back at me.

He told me I had built up considerable credit in my account and it was time I drew on that.  He didn’t even mind if I went into debit as he told me he was confident I would recover in time and put my account back into credit.

In short, he had total and utter confidence in me.

In that one conversation, he earned my loyalty for life and the organisation went into perpetual credit with me.

And I did draw on the credit in my account, and probably went overdrawn, but I repaid the organisation considerably once I’d recovered, just as he knew I would.

And yet I wonder how he would have reacted had a “debit” employee come to talk to him.  I wonder if the “debit” employee would even have been in work, as the employer would probably have been in debit with them too and they would have gone off sick already.

So this is why I think its a powerful concept.

It can help to explain why flexible working isn’t working for everyone.

It can help to explain why job satisfaction might not be as high as expected.

And I still offer the concept to people I work with as evidence of why employee engagement matters, right down to individual level.

Its about credit.

Are you in credit?

Is your organisation in credit with you?

Till next time…

Gary

PS my wedding outfit is purchased and, having tried it on, I think I look absolutely sensational

The New Boy

So last week I changed jobs for the first time in 12 years. My first week went really well but I obviously experienced being “the new boy” and this blog is about that experience, and the process of socialisation into an organisation. 

How does a new employee move from being the new boy to being settled in and feeing comfortable? Who takes responsibility for this and how does it work?

In my experience, induction processes usually focus on the formal aspects of a new role, but I think the informal aspects are perhaps as important if not more so, and these are things that aren’t written down anywhere and which, often unless you ask, no one tells you. 

The process of socialisation is crucial in developing the high engagement levels linked to high performance. So why is so much left to chance, or to the employee?

In no particular order here are some of the things you could ensure a new employee finds out about in order to achieve early socialisation.

Can you park anywhere on the car park or are some places informally reserved? Will you upset someone by parking in “their” space they’ve parked in for years?

What does the dress code mean in practice? It may say what’s not allowed, but it doesn’t say what may be frowned upon and muttered about in corners even if it’s technically allowed. 

How does the organisation use and expect its employees to use social media? Are employees encouraged to promote the brand and use social media during the day to talk about work issues or not? Are employees encouraged to connect with each other or not? What about live tweeting a training session? Is that seen as active engagement or not paying attention?

Do you provide tea, coffee, milk etc for staff or do they need to bring their own or join an existing kitty arrangement? And if you have to grab a cup on the first day, how do you know you’re not using a cup belonging to someone else? Who washes up? Facilities staff or the employees? On my first day last week another staff member marched over to me to explain the “rules” around washing the tea towels but to be honest it was good they did because at my last place the facilities staff would wash these for you so I’d have just left it, and therefore upset people who’d have viewed me as lazy. 

Do people use Outlook to look at availability of people and rooms before booking meetings or not?

Is there a culture of copying people in using the Cc field on emails, and what happens if you “take out the Cc?”

Despite what the policies and staff handbook may say, what are the prevailing attitudes towards flexible working, reward and recognition and employee wellbeing?

How does important news get around the organisation? What are the main mechanisms for letting people know what’s happening, both in a business sense and from a personal perspective?

How easy or difficult is it for people to remember all the names of the new people and departments they will interact with in their first week? For example I’ve been introduced to over 100 staff and haven’t a chance of remembering all their names yet. And the department names, sometimes initials, don’t always make sense yet. They will, but should there be an easy guide to help you remember? The same  with room naming conventions – I had a meeting in a room that was identifiable only by three letters and two numbers. I didn’t have a clue where it was, but as soon as I asked someone told me where it was, how to get there and offered to accompany me. Could it be more easily explained or made simple?

Can you eat at your desk? In my new organisation, yes you can. But in my old organisation, no you couldn’t and in fact it was frowned upon. I’ve now eaten at my desk this last week and been furtively looking around for someone to tell me off about doing so. 

When you book leave on the self service system, do you need to book your bank holidays? In my old organisation no, in the new one yes.

If technology is used in the workplace, for example tablets, how is usage of these viewed? Many organisations encourage this type of flexible working and remote working possibilities but if only a minority have the technology it can be viewed as an elitist approach and be quite divisive instead of being viewed as a productivity aid. This leads to a different view being taken of the use of paper based processes and so on. 

Obviously as the new boy I’ve also had the same conversation dozens of times, been asked the same questions about me and my background and done the same to others. At my last place of work I remember this well and I’m not sure there is another way around it, but one difference this time around is the presence of social media which allows some knowledge about people to go ahead of actually meeting them. That’s both a good and a bad thing but in my case people have homed in on my triathlon training and that’s been a source of conversation with many people, enabling the ice to be broken.

But still, I wonder what organisations can do to make this easier for all concerned? Most people who met me last week will remember the HR Triathlete but how easy is it for me to remember the USPs of the hundred or so individuals I met?

I’ve been wondering how many of the people I met will become very good close friends outside work? It ought to happen, but how can you tell straight away? I wouldn’t have predicted the two closest friends I met at my last place would have become such good friends (to the extent that I got a bit sentimental about the two of them in my leaving speech), but thinking about it I didn’t meet one of them for a few weeks as he was on holiday when I started, and didn’t meet the other for around six months into my tenure. 

Weird how things go. 

But friendship is one of the things that make a new starter feel settled. Everyone I’ve met has been friendly and welcoming and that’s a good start, but organisations do often leave new starters to find out most of the above list on their own with or without friendly coworkers. 

What else makes you feel settled?

At the end of my first week I reflected on this. 

It is achieving something, something that makes a difference. And I did. 

It is finding answers to most or all of the list at the start of this blog. And I did. 

It’s also some other things, for example getting your furniture arranged in a way that makes the workspace yours and not your predecessors. It’s about setting up your software with all the settings you are used to. It’s about having someone laugh at a (bad) joke you make. It’s about having someone come to you for advice on something. It’s about being able to plan out what you need to do over the next few weeks and months and making a list of these. It’s about your connections, online and offline, checking in with you to find out how you’re getting on. It’s about finding the best route to and from work. It’s about people telling you how glad they are you’re working with them. And it’s about the feeling in your gut that you’re not just a new boy, but someone who will soon be an old hand. 

And that, at the end of any first week, is a good sign. 

What would help you settle in to a new job, and how can organisations make it easier for newbies?

Till next time…

Gary

Ps in other news, wedding dress purchased, grooms suit being researched, wedding menu selected, stag do booked and lots more things about to happen!