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Four ways to avoid Borientation

March 2017

Part One | First impressions count- check out our top tips for delivering successful onboarding and orientation sessions…

Best Bank in the World Incorporated is holding an onboarding and orientation session for new recruits, as part of their induction. It’s supposed to be a fun way to engage new staff and educate them on the company’s top notch financial services, but 337 slides later- it’s turning into more of a ‘borientation’. Among the new recruits are four unique individuals – each with different roles, personalities and lifestyles.

Meet Derek, he’s the new finance director and has been in this session for exactly two hours and twenty seven minutes. He knows this because he hasn’t stopped looking at the clock since he sat down. Derek has drunk his coffee, secretly checked the football scores and watched a viral video about a dog that’s learnt how to ice skate. He’s trying to remember what time to pick up the kids and thinking about how angry his wife will be when she realises he’s forgotten to give the cat its worming medicine.

Angela the HR manager is anxious. She’s pretty sure she spelt the word ‘recruitment’ wrong in an email to her boss and there’s a big report on her desk that needs to be filed tomorrow.  Angela thinks the new finance manager is a bit of silver fox, but she’s determined to keep her distance. Especially after what happened with the handyman at her last job.

Tamsin has joined the team as a marketing executive from a trendy company where they had a wine fridge for Friday afternoons. She’s spent the morning Googling holidays she can’t afford and purchasing Jo Malone candles for her new spa bathroom. Tamsin spent 20 minutes talking to a very boring man about his cat’s worming medicine during the coffee break and is worried she’s made a mistake joining Best Bank in the World inc.

New sales manager Ashley is feeling confident. He knows he can make at least three deals in his first week, if only they’d stop going on about company policy and let him get on with it. He’s going to smash this new job like he smashes Saturday nights and his mum’s dinners-especially when she spells out his name with Birds Eye’s Alphabites. This onboarding session is putting him to sleep, but he’s got a great view of the new marketing girl’s legs- so it’s not all bad.

It’s fair to say the new team members are not that engaged with their induction. How can Best Bank of the World Incorporated avoid a repeat of this ‘borientation’?

Here’s a few tips for keeping your new employees engaged during their inductions…


During an onboarding session, you’re dealing with a lot of different personalities. From Angela’s nerves to Ashley’s (potentially misplaced) confidence, the challenge is getting people to work together. By utilising different skills, you can encourage new staff to work together through problem-solving activities such as treasure hunts, sporting games and escape rooms. As well as breaking the ice, teamwork is integral to building future working relationships. (You’ll just need to make sure Ashley doesn’t get too friendly with Tamsin.)

Creating memories

Nobody ever created their greatest memories with three hours of PowerPoint presentations followed by a selection of soggy sandwiches. With so much technology and so many creative websites on offer, there’s no excuse for putting your new staff to sleep on their first day. Whether it’s ushering Derek and Angela into a photobooth together or challenging Ashley to a dance-off, onboarding sessions should include opportunities for fun as well as learning.


Your new recruits sold themselves to the company during their interviews, now it’s time for you to sell yourself to them. In an age where branding is key to every aspect of a company’s work, it must be considered when organising group inductions and onboarding sessions. Each event activity should be carefully considered to reflect the company’s values, objectives and personality. If you want your brand to say ‘exciting, innovative and young’, you’ll need lively, creative and interactive activities like puzzles, games and competitions.


As well as making your new staff feel like valuable team members, the onboarding process needs to introduce new starters to other people within the organisation (preferably those who’ll sing its praises!) Employees should be encouraged to get out of the board room to explore the office and surrounding location. They should be given the opportunity to discover interesting facts about their colleagues, the company, and the vicinity through challenges and games. It’ll help to keep your staff engaged and involved from the first day- boosting their role within the organisation.

Will the new intakes successfully make it through their first week? Click here to find out…



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