The first 30 days of a job can feel like a blur. New hires are getting to know their co-workers, managers, the job, the company, the tasks – and everything in between. As a manager, hopefully, you’ve been able to spend adequate time with your new hire. But a lot of it has probably been spent on task-oriented training. Making time for feedback questions as they relate to manager interaction, job performance, team dynamics and career progression will help you understand what makes your new employee tick.
Here are 23 questions to ask new employees that will help you get to know them – and their preferences at work – better.
What aspects of work would you like more involvement and direction from me? Which would you like less? If you can sort this out, it will save you both time.
How can I make your job easier? As a manager, your job should be to support employees. Find out firsthand how you can do it.
What would be the best use of our one-on-one time? Some employees prefer to review tasks and others want a brainstorm session. Let them use the time with you for what they need.
What would you do differently if you were me? A fresh perspective can help you improve. And it will also lend insight into what the employee might need more of.
What resources do you need to be successful at your job? Especially if this is a new role, there might be certain equipment, software or supplies that would aid your new hire in being successful. And they might be conflicted about outright asking.
Which aspect of the job are you excited about? Which are you worried about? In a month, the new employee should see his or her future and be able to express how they feel about certain tasks.
What has surprised you about the job in the first 30 days? Their answer will reveal how accurately you marketed the job and matched the skills necessary to complete it. It may also reveal something they’re uncomfortable doing.
What are some highlights of the job so far? You might find out that he or she likes giving presentations or that they were happy to hear one of their coworkers was impressed with their work. This question will show you what hits home for them.
What motivates you to come to work? If you can hone in on what excites your new hire about the job, you can help them achieve ultimate employee satisfaction.
Tell me about the best day you’ve had so far. And the worst day. This will lend insight into what the new employee values in doing their job.
How frequently do you like to receive feedback? Some employees want to know how they’re doing every step of the way; others prefer a quarterly check-in. They can feel bombarded or lost if you’re giving feedback too often or not enough.
How do you prefer to receive feedback? You may find your new hire likes written feedback, so he or she can take the time to digest it. Others may prefer it verbally, so they can have a two-way conversation about it.
How would you rate yourself? This answer will reveal how confident the new hire is in their performance.
What challenges have you come across thus far? Anything here is fair game. The new employee may mention another employee or a certain project.
Have you had any stressful experiences in the first month? As a manager, you may prefer to catch up on emails on a Sunday night, but that could stress out your new hire. Knowing that will help avoid any unnecessary anxiety. This is important, especially this early in the relationship.
Who on the team has been most helpful? And how? This provides good insight into which employees on the team step up when needed.
Is there something that’s missing on the team? Especially if you’re looking to expand the team, it’s nice to find out what the newcomer thinks about future needs.
Have you had any conflicts with coworkers? Hopefully, this isn’t an issue in the first month, but it’s better to know and address it early if need be.
What do you like about the organization? This will help you see if the new hire is connecting to the organization. It could be a determining factor in longevity.
What area of the company would you like to learn more about? If there are projects that require collaboration, the answer could give you good direction. It may also lend insight into the employee’s other interests or career aspiration.
How can I help you reach your goals? Frame this as a big-picture, career-projection question. You want to show the newcomer you see them for more than what you hired them in for. Potential is important for retention.
What do you think you need to improve now that you’ve been doing the job for a month? As a manager, you probably have a few things on your list that you’d like the new employee to work on but see if they mention it first. It will help you determine how self-aware they are.
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working? Sure, this is a personal question, but it will allow you to see your direct report as a person and not just an employee. It’ll help you start building a personal relationship if you haven’t already