Manager toolkit

Challenges and solutions

In the table below we have listed some of the common challenges people associate with bringing young people into teams, and  suggested some solutions to help. Most challenges are straightforward to deal with, and having a firm but supportive conversation with the young person is often the key to success.

 
Challenge Solution
Young person is regularly turning up late to work

1. Have a conversation with the young person to find out why this is happening. Is there something going on at home or an issue with their commute that is causing them to struggle to get into work on time?

2. Ask their buddy/mentor to join the conversation, or have the conversation with the young person separately. Approaching the problem this way can make the intervention seem less formal and therefore less intimidating.

3. Explain why it is important that they are punctual and arrive ready to work. Perhaps discuss what the impact of their lateness is having on the rest of the team or on patients, and how the importance of being punctual links to your organisation’s values.

4. Establish a plan to make sure that this problem improves, including check in points when you will meet to review.

Young person regularly takes personal calls or uses their mobile phone at work.

1. Find out why the young person, to find out why they are taking these personal calls. Are these important calls that they need to take, or are they calls that can wait until they’re on their break? The young person may be unaware that it isn’t acceptable to use their phone during work time.

2. Ask their buddy/mentor to join the conversation, or have the conversation with the young person separately if appropriate.

3. Make sure they understand what the policy for mobile phone use in your organisation is and what this means in practice. In the welcome pack checklist we recommend that these policies are sent out to the young person before they start.

4. Explain what the next steps will be if this continues to be a problem.

Young person uses their work computer to view personal social media accounts

1. Sit down with the young person, explain what is considered acceptable and appropriate IT use within your organisation, and how your organisation views social media.

2. Ask their buddy/mentor to join the conversation, or have the conversation with the young person separately if appropriate.

3. Explain the acceptable use policies for your organisation to make sure they understand what is expected of them. In the welcome pack checklist we recommend that these policies are sent out to the young person before they start.

4. Explain what the next steps will be if this continues to be a problem.

I’m concerned about the additional workload training a young person brings

1. It does take time and effort to support a new team member, but it will be worth it. In a recent ThinkFuture survey of 16-24 year olds in the NHS, 67 per cent of respondents said they see themselves working in the NHS in 10 years’ time.

2. Encouraging all team members to support new inexperienced employees can minimise the workload of one person training a young person.

3. Asking an established team member to provide support and mentoring to the young person can also be very beneficial, and is a good way for the established team member to improve their mentoring skills.

Young person’s behaviour is not appropriate.

1. Have a conversation with the young person to ask about the behaviour you have observed and explain why it’s not appropriate to behave in this way in the workplace.

2. Ask their buddy/mentor to join the conversation, or have the conversation with the young person separately if appropriate.

3. Explain what the next steps will be if this continues to be a problem.

Young person doesn’t dress appropriately for work.

1. Discuss what the appropriate dress code for work is. Refer to and share with them information regarding dress code from the staff handbook. It may also be helpful to explain to them the reasons for the dress code (for example, infection control measures etc).

2. Ask their buddy/mentor to join the conversation, or have the conversation with the young person separately if appropriate.

3. Explain what the next steps will be if this continues to be a problem.

Didn’t find your challenge or solution? Email the ThinkFuture team to share your perspective here.