Work & Career: How to Start a New Job- The First 90 Days

newjob.jpgCongratulations! You have secured your dream job. All of your time spent refining your resume, researching opportunities, and interviewing has paid off! You experience an initial feeling of euphoria but as your start date draws closer, you find that you are becoming somewhat anxious. Perhaps it has been a long time since you have changed companies. Or even if not, change can be challenging and it takes time to adjust.

Here are some strategies to help you through the first critical ninety days in your new role.

1) Maintain a positive attitude. Remember to be patient and that change takes time. There is a lot to learn, you need to figure out what are the nuances of corporate culture, “who is who in the zoo”. Forgive yourself if you don’t remember everyone’s name never mind where the coffee maker is. Remind yourself that over time everything will become more comfortable.

2) Very early in your first week and ideally on your first day meet with your Manager. Understand company strategy and objectives, your Manger’s goals and objectives, as well as those for your role. What are expectations over the first three, six months and first year? Ask questions and gather information. Take notes as you are in information gathering stage and won’t be able to retain it all.

3) Learn the corporate culture. You already have a feel for the culture from the interviewing process, but now you have a chance to build on this understanding. Ensure that you pay attention to the corporate culture and respect it. All companies have slightly different cultures including norms around work hours, meeting protocol, dress code, communication process etc. To thrive in a company the corporate culture needs to be a fit with your values and you need to understand, respect, and immerse yourself in it.

4) Set up meetings with your key partners. Start building solid working relationships right away; understand their goals and objectives within their roles. If you are managing a team set up 1:1s with each member of your team. Understand not only each individual’s work responsibilities but also their career objectives, get to know each member of your team as a person and find out what they are motivated by.

5) Ask questions but try not to ask the same questions twice. Write down the information you learn, understand what resources are available to you and take initiative to learn and read through (e.g. policy handbook, intranet site etc).

6) Smile, be engaging, and helpful, even if at times you are feeling overwhelmed. It is exciting starting something new and being in the early stages . . . . . . Enjoy the process!

7) As time goes by solicit feedback from your Manager – knowing you are on the right track will make you feel better and if there is any helpful feedback, much better to learn it early on and adjust.

8) Resist making quick changes. Spend more time listening than talking and avoid making quick changes. At this point one doesn’t know what one doesn’t know.

9) Remember to thank those who helped you get your new job. Send out thank you notes to all those who were supportive through your search. Let your full network know of your new position and contact information.

10) On days where it may seem overwhelming, go back to one! Remember that change takes time and to be positive and patient.

By following these simple strategies on how to make the most of your first ninety days you will find that the process is not daunting and is indeed exciting and energizing. This is stage where possibilities are endless and by making the most of this stage and quickly building relationships and learning about the business, you are building a strong foundation for your future within your new role and company.

Hirepower is a Human Resources consulting organization. Through our partnership with Workopolis, we offer job seekers and employee’s career advice including resume refinement, cover letters, and career coaching services. Please feel free to visit or email us at [email protected] to learn more about how we can help.