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Who Packed Your Socks?

What does onboarding employees have to do with packing socks?

My wife was gracious enough to help me pack for my recent trip to Toronto.  I had some good prep to get done, wanted to get a work out in Sunday morning and get some quality time in with her before I left.

It was really helpful to “refill” my duffel suitcase while I got other things done.  She is a much better packer than me and having less wrinkles in pants and shirts when I arrive is always appreciated.

She asked me a couple questions on what I wanted included, certain shoes and shirts for workouts, pants and shoes for work.

I am sure you, like me have favorite things you like to have with you.  For me, its thicker socks that are soft and more comfortable, 2-3 lulu lemon shirts that are good for wearing under sweaters.

As I unpacked my bag and searched through the bag for the shirts and socks as I put things away I was surprised I could not find them.  They are always there!  What?  Wait a second, Blake packed the bag.  Oh man, how could she not have packed the comfortable stuff?  She sees me wear it all the time. 

Over the next minute I am frustrated.  I think about why she may not have packed it.

Did I tell her?  Should she know what to put in there?  Maybe not.  What did she get right?  A lot.  Maybe 90%.

So how does this apply to onboarding your employees?

Well without telling her what to pack, through being a part of “the team” she observed what I like and put that in the bag.  She asked a couple questions on how I like to work while on the road and put that in the bag.

Did I give her a written list?  Did I verbally walk her through all items needed? No.  Who is that on? It’s on me.

When we are onboarding people onto a new team or into a new process, we need to make sure “we” are clear on what the task entails and over communicate to close the loop.

Now since my wife reads this blog, I will just end by saying THANK YOU for helping me be more efficient and learn a lesson that I can share with all of you!

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