Prepare for New College Grads Joining Your Team

Linda Dulye's picture
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College graduations get a lot of media attention in April and May, but a lot of students graduate in December and that means a new wave of workers (albeit a smaller one) enter the workforce. If you expect to welcome a recent college grad to your team here are some things to consider.

First, keep in mind that today’s college grad travels through a world that’s more connected than what we saw only five years ago. To prepare, we recommend a review of your expectations from an operational and communications standpoint. Then help them succeed right out of the gate by using these tips:

Outline your guidelines for communication practices. Explain how you like to be kept up to date: a weekly email report, a one-on-one meeting, a touch-base phone call – maybe all of the above. Also, communicate the timing, format and goals of all key staff or organizational meetings.

Keep an open mind. Today’s new college graduates are “digital natives” – they’ve grown up with technology and are often early adopters of emerging tools and online services. Tap into this knowledge to help your broader team understand how topics such as technology or social media can help the team do work better, faster or cheaper. Leaders have a lot to teach a fresh workforce but they stand to learn a lot from them, too.

Look to the future. After your new hire has settled into their role, schedule a time to talk about career objectives and growth opportunities. This is particularly helpful for recent graduates. Provide a roadmap for personal and professional development that would help these students realize the applicability of their skills, experience and knowledge in today’s workplace.

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