Tuesday, June 14, 2016

You've Just Started your New Job. Now What?

by Rebecca Cook, Director of Coaching and Development
Kelley Graduate Career Services


Rebecca Cook
We’ve all been there. You’ve accepted your “dream” job, maybe moved to a new city or new apartment, and now it’s DAY 1. You’re likely nervous and excited all at once. It is a new start for you and you want to do well, impress people and enjoy it. So, how can you make sure that happens?

For both internships and full-time positions, there are several key things to focus on that can help you to be successful.

Promote yourself.
Get to know your role and organization and figure out where you can contribute early. There is likely some low-hanging fruit you can pick, so focus on that to get yourself off to a good start. Ask questions and give your opinion. This is the perfect time to ask about how things work and how you can add value. You are your best cheerleader and others will not always notice all that you are doing.

Understand the company.
How does it make money? What does the organizational structure look like? How does work get done? What is the culture and etiquette? Read as much as you can about your new company, both in company produced documents and outside information. The more knowledge you have about your organization, the better you can contribute and make decisions.

Understand your role and how you are evaluated.
Who will be evaluating you and when? Who had the role before you did and why did they leave? What were they working on and what did they leave unfinished? Who are the key stakeholders that you need to get to know?  How do you fit in to the overall organization? Getting an understanding of this is extremely important to being successful in your role.

Communicate, communicate, communicate.
You need to understand how to work with your new boss. How do they want to get and give information? Email, verbal, etc.? Make sure that you set up one-on-ones regularly if they don’t do it right away. Start with one meeting a month. Also make sure to schedule a 90-day review with your supervisor to make sure you are on the right track. It’s much easier to take the time to make sure you are staying on the right track rather than working on something for months and finding out you are on the wrong path.

Network—both internally and externally.
Start internally and get to know your team and your supervisor(s) and then work your way outwards to others in the division and organization. Get to know everyone who will be a stakeholder in what you are working on, no matter what department they call home. Externally, join organizations or groups for like-minded individuals and others who work in the same function and/or industry. The more you get to know people, the better they will like you and be willing to respond when you need them.

Lastly, make sure to take some time for yourself to get settled in. Good luck in that new role!

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