Starting a new job can be challenging, stressful, difficult, and confusing. I know since I just started as the Vice President of Operations at GroupBy Inc. It is a role that is both challenging and quite rewarding.
Over my career I have had many new jobs at new companies doing new and varied roles. Each time the new job presents itself with a set of challenges that were absent from my previous role. This can become a challenge to be successful, build momentum, and create trust in my abilities.
Throughout my career I have also read many books, attended many conferences, been supported by many individuals, reported to many managers, and learned from many groups.
With all the above in mind, here are 3 golden tips to make your first 30 days at your new job amazing and foundational to have a tremendous experience where you provide value and are seen as an asset to your company.
TIP #1: Show the Utmost Humility
One of the most damaging habits that you demonstrate is one of “knowing what’s best” for those around you. It can undermine your entire role as well as demonstrate a complete lack of modesty. Avoid this habit at all costs.
Practical Advice — Enter the new job with humility. Understand that you don’t know the culture, you don’t know the service/product, and that you don’t know what is best for the group’s situation. Enter all conversations with an attitude of curiosity. This will protect you from believing that you have the answer and from undermining potential relationships across the entire organization.
“Pride makes us artificial; humility make us real.” — Thomas Merton
TIP #2: Build Relationships Upon Trust and Honesty
When joining a new company, people will already have a perception about your experience and the role you now have. These perceptions can become toxic is not checked at the door. If many of your new colleagues think that you “save the company” then it is important that you break free of these ideas and replace them with healthy and practical ones. Many of the needed changes and new habits are already in the organization, your job is to build upon them with others.
Practical Advice — Seek out relationships that are healthy where all parties gain value. One of simplest ways to provide and get value is to identify and build strong relationships with those around you. Listen. Ask questions. Listen. Seek to understand. Listen. Be honest about you see and then ask for deeper learning. Listen. Once you gain trust based on honesty, consistent behaviours, and genuinely caring others then you will be able to contribute value as you work together with others.
“Be genuinely interested in everyone you meet and everyone you meet will be genuinely interested in you” — Rasheed Ogunlaru
TIP #3: Collaboratively Adjust Expectations Often
A painful and common pitfall for people starting a new job is to assume that the expectations by their manager is clear or static. Throughout the interview process, your new manager will describe the role, what you will be doing, and the expectations. This information will be basic and lack the details needed to make concrete plans.
Practical Advice — Schedule expectations discussions with your manager. One of the first tasks for you to accomplish is to get in front of your new manager to make expectations and working styles clear. Schedule an expectations meeting with your manager in the first couple of weeks to gain clarity and to understand what your new manager wants you to focus on. Then also schedule (and build into the first meeting) a discussion around working styles. It is important that you identify your manager’s working style and then adjust yours to fit that style. Don’t compromise who you are. Instead, adjust how your share information and the frequency of the message.
“Make sure you are clear about the expectations your boss has for you” — Judy Smith
Remember that, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care”. Become a caring and compassionate individual and then your ability to lead will grow exponentially. Enjoy the experience of a new job as there is much to learn and many to learn from.
Paul J. Heidema