Project Manager NETFORMIC GmbH & Author
Hi, I’m Anna and since May I’m a new team member at NETFORMIC. I support the team as project manager in all questions around the project. At NETFORMIC we live an agile project culture, which means that all projects are based on transparency and mutual commitment.
1st day of work
The first day of work in a new company is usually associated with quite a lot of excitement. The night before I already think about what I should wear the next day to make a good first impression. My thoughts revolve around the new area of responsibility and my colleagues. And of course, the most important question of all: what cake do I bake for the debut?
In the days of Corona, it’s all a little different. When it comes to the outfit, only the top is important, and I’d hate to eat the cake alone. The round of introductions or the tour of the new office could also prove to be somewhat difficult. The first day of work is particularly important for setting the course for a good team spirit. Because as we know, it’s the first impression that counts. I started my very first day at NETFORMIC with a bit of scepticism about what it would be like and was pleasantly surprised.
On Monday, I headed to the abandoned office to pick up my laptop. It was drizzling and I had forgotten my umbrella. The first positive: Fortunately, none of my colleagues sees me like this. After picking up everything from the kind receptionist, I started my way home.
At home the first surprise: the hardware was already perfectly prepared and also all login data worked – thanks to IT. Mentally, I had already prepared myself for a call to support.
Get to know each other via Zoom !?
We continued with a first acquaintance with the unit leader. And oh wonder – you can be wonderfully nervous before a Zoom meeting too. In addition to an initial training plan, I also have a mentor who, together with the unit manager, guides me through the first few weeks. And lo and behold, even with Zoom and various chats, you can get to know your colleagues wonderfully. My personal round of introductions in all offices was replaced by a Zoom meeting with all colleagues. So instead of the standard handshake, I introduced myself to 50 little participant boxes on my screen. But think positive! Since the respective name of the colleague is always displayed, one never gets into the embarrassment of forming dislocated sentences because one has forgotten it.
Actually a (nearly) normal onboarding
Time flew by, I was digging through the internal wiki and all sorts of training material. Conclusion of the first week: a lot of input and nice colleagues. Actually just like a normal onboarding.
After the initial scepticism has subsided, I sometimes perceive the days in the home office as much more productive. The commute and interruptions in daily doing are eliminated. Nevertheless, personal exchange is not neglected. All meetings are held with video and there are events like the Kitchentalk – which replaces the conversation while getting coffee, the end-of-week beer on Friday and the private lunch where you try to chew handsomely in front of the camera – all remotely from home of course.
My conclusion after one month – the personal contact is missing a bit, but through Zoom and Co. the colleagues are not far away. In any case, the challenge of onboarding is on both sides. On the one hand, the company must organise itself well in advance. A knowledge database of all internal processes, such as a wiki, makes training much easier. It is also imperative that all software and hardware issues are settled beforehand to avoid possible frustrations on both sides.
But good onboarding also depends on the newcomer, because his or her initiative is needed in home office. He needs to proactively speak up when something isn’t right, the team can’t smell it as they say.