By Andy Bailey

Many leaders put a lot of effort into finding the right job applicants. They host several rounds of interviews, test applicants’ skills and sometimes even treat candidates to dinner. Once they hire someone, they breathe easy and return to the status quo at work.

A leader’s job is nowhere near complete once a candidate is placed within the organization. Instead, the energy spent on finding the right person should then be invested in keeping the right person.

Researchers found that 90 percent of organizations believe employees make the decision to stay or leave within their first year. That means you have 365 days to make sure your newest team member feels engaged, happy and purposeful at your organization.

The following are three ways to welcome your new team members the right way.

Roll out the red carpet. Your job candidate has made it through the hiring gauntlet! Give him a break and welcome him to the company the right way ­– with a fun first day. Of course there will be paperwork, but try to keep it minimal. Take your new team member out to lunch, gather the company together to introduce him or gift him with company swag and a bottle of wine. Perhaps even send flowers to his spouse in an effort to welcome the whole family.

Whatever you do, make sure the first day is a memorable, exciting one. There’s nothing that will kill a person’s eagerness faster than spending a first day alone in an office reading a handbook and signing forms. Personally, I would rethink my decision to join that organization.

Share the company vision. In addition to the fun, take a few minutes on your new hire’s first day to share the company’s vision, its core values and the big “why” behind the work. When a team member understands how his individual work contributes to a larger company goal, it makes the work have meaning.

Remind the rest of your team, as well. When an entire organization is aligned to the company goals, decisions about strategy, projects to pursue and benchmarks to hit are easier to discern.

Be a leader. People don’t quit jobs because of the jobs themselves. Instead, they quit because of the people. More often than not, these people are their direct managers or unit leaders.

Create a system of peers, mentors and leaders that will support not only your new team member but also the entire organization. Use these channels to share feedback and take pulse checks on how everyone is doing. With this network of support and mentorship, new hires will have a go-to contact for any issues or difficulties they’re having.

The hiring process doesn’t end when someone is hired. Invest time and effort into successfully onboarding new team members to reduce turnover and retain the talent you attract.

Andy Bailey is lead entrepreneur coach with business coaching firm Petra and serves as the entrepreneur organization’s global membership director. Visit his blog at for more business and leadership insight. @PetraCoach.