What Training a New Puppy and Onboarding New Hires Have in Common (Hint: Pretty Much Everything)

graphic that says what training a new puppy and onboarding new hires have in common

As I type this, my new puppy is whimpering softly at my feet trying to get my attention. He is a rescue dog from Houston, an escapee from Hurricane Harvey. Obviously, we named him Houston. It was one small way I could offer support in this time of crises, not to mention making my two daughters the happiest girls on the planet.

As we began the process of introducing Houston to our home, it got me thinking how similar puppy training is to onboarding new hires.

Seriously, think about it.

On Houston’s first day with us, he was scared and nervous but also excited, curious and eager to learn and please.

Houston is learning the sights and sounds of our home and neighborhood, just like a new employee learns the new commute, a new office and its surrounding area.

Both Houston and a new hire will experience a period of transition where they are testing out their new environment, and trying to understand their place and contribution.

We are taking it slow with Houston and we don’t expect him to hit the ground running and be perfect immediately. The same way you need to be patient with onboarding new hires.

Our early days with Houston are all about setting expectations and training him on our family culture and the behaviors we expect. Our current focus is on sleeping through the night, no biting and potty training. Again, more similarities with new hires (minus the potty training).

We introduce new toys and games to challenge Houston just as a new employee is introduced to new technology, process and procedures.

We pay close attention to Houston and look for him to give feedback when he’s stressed or overstimulated or needs a break. This is the same with keeping your fingers on the pulse of new hires and soliciting feedback from them regularly.

Houston has to get to know the quirks and personalities of everyone in our family community – my husband and I, our two daughters, neighbors and visitors – but he also needs to learn who to take direction from and look to for proper cues on how to behave appropriately in different situations (me obviously).

All kidding aside, if you need help onboarding new hires or you need a complete overhaul of your current process, give me a call or send a message here: www.powersresourcecenter.com/contact/. If you need help with puppy training, don’t call me – but I will keep you posted on Houston’s progress!

No Comments