Eliminating new job jitters
Starting a new job can be daunting, whether it’s your first job, within your existing industry, or a completely new industry for you. I have been fortunate enough to work in several different industries including pharmaceuticals, luxury goods, law, FMCG and now tertiary education. Eventually, I ended up in marketing, an industry I love because it helps me to blend my analytical skills from my arts/law degree with my creative side.
However, along this journey, I realised that starting well and making a good impression in the first three months (and in particular the first week) with my new manager and colleagues has been critical to my success.
This was confirmed for me when I read a recent study by Robert Half which surveyed 9,000 job seekers in 11 countries and found that that 91% of employees considered quitting their job after three months because they failed to make a good impression in their first week with their colleagues.
In the long-term, these employees felt that this would affect their future progression within the company as it made it much harder for them to assimilate into the work culture and deliver projects when working collaboratively with other colleagues.
Upon reflection, I realised that throughout this journey I had subconsciously been implementing several steps that had helped me to excel both personally and professionally and create lasting relationships with my peers whenever I started a new role.
Whilst everyone’s journey is different, here are my top tips for starting a new job and making your first week and first three months a success.
Before your first day, it’s important to do as much research as possible on your new organisation. This could include reviewing their social media to get an overall sense of the company culture. Not only does this help you get an idea about the company’s office culture but also the appropriate attire to wear on your first day.
Contact your manager before your first day and confirm your schedule
This helps to ease your nerves and confirm all the important details you need to make a good first impression such as your start time, lunchtime, and finishing time. This also helps to eliminate any misunderstanding, as often employers give new employees shorter hours or weeks to ease them into their role.
Do a test run of everything to ensure you arrive early
This might include testing your internet connection if you are working remotely or dry-running your commute. Eliminating any unknown issues from arising will ease your nerves and help you relax before your big day.
Find a buddy
If your workplace does not assign you a buddy, ask your manager to set you up with one. A workplace buddy is very helpful in your first three months as it helps you to ask those silly questions you don’t feel comfortable asking your manager or get a second opinion about tasks you are completing from someone who understands the procedures within the company. It’s also a nifty way of developing friendships quite quickly in the office and having a lunch buddy for your first week.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Often, we fail to ask enough questions in our first three months because we want to show our new colleagues and manager that we are confident. Some new hires believe if they ask questions it makes them look incapable.
However, asking as many relevant questions in your first three months and in particular your first week is important for your overall success. It shows your interest in your professional development and the company.
Additionally, according to a recent study completed at Harvard, asking follow-up questions will endear you to your new co-workers. So don’t be afraid to ask your manager about your new role or your colleagues about themselves!
The first three months of a new job can be stressful. Don’t forget to practise self-care such as ensuring proper sleep, hydration, and nutrition. This will allow you to perform at your best and pass your probation.
Featured image courtesy of Unsplash