After moving into a new neighborhood recently, the doorbell kept ringing over and over. On the other side were neighbors with beaming smiles, welcoming me with chocolate cakes, brownies and apple pies. Certainly, I embraced the sugary treats with open arms. The simple act of kindness immediately made me feel like I was a part of the community -- in less than a week.
Ever the skeptic, I still wondered about the motives of a few of the neighbors. Were they simply being nosy as they craned their necks to try to see inside the house? Were they trying to figure out where I was from and what I was doing there? One elderly neighbor made it quite clear that he and his wife have enjoyed living in a quiet community and he “hopes it stays that way.”
Subtle hinting not lost on me.
Whatever their motives or messages, the generosity made me realize just how guilty I have been in my previous abodes when it comes to welcoming the newest residents. It also made me realize I could be a lot more welcoming to the fresh faces at my own company.
It seems we're so (bad excuse) busy with our day-to-day work that we often fail to roll out the welcome mat for new employees. Are you guilty of this?
It reminded me of an article that Amanda Koehler, associate editor, wrote a few years back called "The Welcome Wagon." Check it out. She listed good tips on how to make new employees feel welcomed, comforted, valued and supported.