People get new jobs, get promoted, get transferred, and so on. Project team members will come and go. As the project manager you will want to incorporate new team members into the project without losing team cohesion and momentum. Here is a look at how to make the transition as smooth as possible:
The first thing you can do for a new team member is make them feel welcome. Make sure you introduce the new member to the team in a meeting. Also send out a welcome email. If it is possible, invite the new member to lunch. The more you as the project manager can make a new member feel welcome, the more the team member will feel engaged and can contribute sooner.
Time is always of the essence on projects so having new team members get up-to-speed as quickly as possible will help the project stay on track and continue to make deadlines.
Make sure the new member has access to project tools. Ensure they have the appropriate meeting invites. Give them the resources which will be needed to get the work completed and on time. Some projects have an onboarding packet that is provided to new team members, so they will know who to contact and where to go.
New project team members will have new ideas and different ways to complete project tasks. Some of the information new members will provide will have already been discussed in previous meetings. The environment you want to create for new members is to share their ideas. So often a new member will come in and want to contribute but they get shut down if an idea or strategy has already been considered. As a project manager you will want to avoid having the new member shut down and just go along with what has already been decided. You will want to encourage new debate and hope that a new idea will appear. You don’t want the project to get off course and not stay on track, but you never know what great things might come from a new team member.