Arlington Sports Conditioning - Pete Leibman

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The Most Important Hour with a New Hire

During a new hire’s first few weeks, it’s especially important to make sure that he feels comfortable and supported. Otherwise, his performance and engagement are likely to suffer, and he could even consider leaving the organization.

The supervisor should schedule a standing appointment to meet with their new direct report for 30-60 minutes each week. This weekly meeting will open the lines of communication and help the supervisor learn if a new hire is struggling or unhappy. If there is a problem, the supervisor can then address it quickly and before it becomes a bigger issue.

The Best Time to Catch-Up

Friday morning is the ideal time for a weekly catch-up. There are many reasons why. First of all, since the weekend is on-deck, people are usually more relaxed and able to think clearly. Secondly, it’s a logical time to reflect on the last week of work and to discuss the plan of attack for the upcoming week. Lastly, by meeting on Friday morning, the direct report can then use the rest of Friday to get a “head start” on the next week. That provides a psychological boost heading into the weekend.

Morning is much better than afternoon for a weekly catch-up. People are usually fresher and more focused in the morning, and conflicts are less likely to arise earlier in the day. If Friday morning is not possible for whatever reason, Monday morning is another option. However, a Monday morning meeting will probably feel less relaxed and more transactional, since each person will be at least semi-distracted by their to-do list for the week ahead.

What Should You Discuss During a Catch-up Meeting?

During a new hire’s first few weeks (and at least once a month after that), Here are some key questions to ask:

  • How are you feeling so far?
  • Has anything surprised you?
  • What have you enjoyed the most about your role so far?
  • What has been most challenging or frustrating so far?
  • What else can we do to help you be even more successful?

These questions open the lines of communication and show the direct report that his supervisor is invested in his success and happiness. They might also reveal a challenge or concern that needs to be addressed immediately.

After a new hire ramps up, the weekly catch-ups should still continue. However, they can focus less on engagement and more on performance. Once someone is up and running, the weekly catch-ups can be used to discuss updates, progress, and challenges on key projects, along with goals for the upcoming week(s).

Once a new hire is up to speed, the weekly catch-up meeting will hold him accountable and help improve his focus and performance. When the direct report knows that he will have to provide his supervisor with a weekly update on his progress, he is more likely to stay on track and go above and beyond on his assignments.

P.S. Looking for more help with your company’s executive recruiting efforts?

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About the author: As the Founder of Stronger Talent, Pete Leibman recruits exceptional leaders for innovative sports, fitness, and wellness companies. Throughout his career, Pete has helped clients recruit exceptional leaders at the Board, C-Suite, Senior Vice President, Vice President, General Manager, Managing Director, and Director levels. Pete’s work has been featured on Fox News, CBS Radio, and, and he is the author of two books and over 250 articles on career management, peak performance, and executive recruiting.

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