Onboarding Advice for Newly Hired Candidates Joan O’Rourke, Partner, OneWorld Consulting, Turkey

Onboarding coaching is increasingly being used by organisations as a means to help their new employees ensure that they know what is expected of them and assist them to focus on forging the relationships they need to succeed in their new role.  International experts recommend that new leaders during the onboarding process “negotiate success” which can be defined as proactively engaging with one’s new boss to ensure targets are clear and achievable, and building relationships with new colleagues and direct reports. Transition experts also recommended that new leaders create coalitions which involve identifying those people who will be important for the new employee’s success and to diagnose informal networks of influence.  Working with an experienced coach can help facilitate this process.

 OneWorld Consulting believes that onboarding coaching support is extremely valuable; it sets the foundation and direction of an individual’s performance and success in the new role. We provide onboarding support to all our newly hired candidates and the feedback we get from them on this process is always positive. In our experience the transition skills an executive in a new role needs to use are often underused and underestimated so encouraging the newly hired candidate to invest time thinking about their transition process  and the skills they need to apply is one of the keys to a successful transition.  There are couple of great books we share with our placed candidates; Michael Watkins’ “The First 90 Days” and Niamh O’Keeffe’s “Your First 100 days: How to Make Maximum Impact in Your New Leadership Role”.   There is also an iphone and android app to suppor the First 100 Days approach which is helpful –  http://hbr.org/books/watkins

The common mistakes we often see people making in the early days of their new role are them succumbing to pressure to make decisions either too quickly or too slowly; not fully understanding the culture of their new organizations and or investing the time they need to fully understand it; relying too much on what may have worked for them in the past; lacking clarity and understanding of what is expected of them in their new role; and not building the relationships they need to integrate them into the new organisation.

Based on our experience our advice is always to encourage the newly placed candidate to create a detailed onboarding plan noting what do they want to achieve on their first day, first week, first month, and so on. Secondly, take time to learn the culture of the new organisation. Thirdly, invest time in the establishing relationships with all stakeholders. Finally, ask for and be prepared to give feedback. Our experience shows that the use of feedback has a big impact on how people view their onboarding as being successful or not.



Recruitment in Turkey. The Dos and Don’ts. by Joan O’Rourke, Partner, OneWorld Consulting, Turkey

Earlier this year we were asked to talk to a group of Irish investors at a Trade Mission in Istanbul organised by Enterprise Ireland. Enterprise Ireland is the government organisation responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets. Approximately twenty five Irish companies participated in the mission from a wide range of industry sectors, some with previous experience of working in Turkey and some just starting out. The topic I was asked to  speak on  was “General Recruitment Dos and Don’ts in Turkey” and to offer insight into this aspect of doing business in Turkey. The event was attended by the  Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr. Eamon Gilmore T.D.

I have been involved in recruitment in Turkey for the last 10 years, and along with  my colleagues at OneWorld Consulting,  have recruited many senior to mid level executives for our clients across a wide of industry sectors. We work with international and Turkish organisations and new companies entering the Turkish market. As one might imagine there could  be a long discussion on recruitment dos and don’ts but to keep it short and simple the key points were highlighted  as follows.

Primary advice for new companies entering the Turkish market is to do your research in terms of talent in the market and what kinds of people profiles you can and cannot expect to find. Do be realistic about who you need to recruit into the organization and who you can  attract to the organisation. Do avoid over or under recruiting as this can lead to various challenges down the road, by this I mean avoid recruiting people who are over or under qualified for the role in question. Do benchmark the people you meet against others. Do look for calibre and quality of people exactly as you would do at home, over people who may appear to have the right connections or network, for example. Do proper reference checks on candidates you want to hire. Do know the salary levels and benefits for the sector so you can benchmark your offer. Experience shows that things may often go wrong at the negotiation stage where expectations on both sides are not met  so having clear information on salary levels is very important. Do pay attention to cultural differences and the nuances in the market as you would do in your home country. Do be open minded during the recruitment process  as candidates may be younger than expected.  For example, we worked with an international client and the hiring manager based in Europe was surprised to see highly qualified Turkish candidates with 8 to 10 years of experience versus the 15 years plus of experience the same job holder in the UK would have. And finally, do work with a recruitment partner who can provide insight and support and who can help find the right people so you don’t have to invest so much of your valuable time searching for people who may not be a fit for the organization

Regarding the don’ts, our advice to the audience was don’t forget that the recruitment best practices you have at home will also apply here, that is, you need to thoroughly assess and evaluate candidates for key roles as you would at home. Don’t make unnecessary assumptions, for example, on such issues as gender or age.  And finally, don’t forget to do your due diligence and use your common sense, just as you would do in your own market.