I just started a job. What should I do next?

Congrats on the new role! Whether you're new to the company or are making an internal transition, there are a few things you need to consider when starting a new job. 

Clarify Expectations:

Ask about expectations whenever appropriate and possible. This will help you define what success will look like in the role and to help you feel at ease. 

You'll need to figure out who your main stakeholders are and spend the first few weeks gauging their expectations for success in this role. From here, you can communicate to adjust and clarify those expectations.

Defining what your new boss, direct reports and co-workers expect of you in your first weeks will help you prioritize your time and manage your feelings around starting the new job.

During the first few weeks and months, it's common to experience a variety of feelings. Often this is due to the new environment, new coworkers (particularly if you don't really know anyone) and a lack of clarity around expectations or understanding of social norms. Feelings like these are only natural and even expected. You can help manage these feelings by asking questions around expectations and adopting a curious, learning mindset.

Understand Your Own Workstyle: 

Your work style is how you work. And it impacts your productivity and happiness on the job. Often we get going without even thinking about our workstyle or reflecting on whether that workstyle is serving us. But you're in a new role! And that means you can press the "restart" button on your workstyle and figure out what works best for you. What worked well in your last job might not prove productive in this job - and that's okay! 

Consider what parts of your work style worked well for you in the past and what you might like to improve or differently in your new job. Acknowledging your workstyle will also help you communicate with your manager about how to best receive feedback, set up targets or goals, and define expectations. Knowing your work style also helps you bring awareness to how you like to be managed.

Consider how you prefer to work and answer the questions below. 

  • How do you make important decisions at work?

  • How do you like to receive positive and negative feedback?

  • How do you ask for help, questions or clarification?

  • How do you like to check-in on progress?

  • How do you prefer to set goals and key performance indicators?

  • How do you report on results to your manager and other stakeholders?

  • Do you prefer working on tasks alone or do you like working together as a team?

  • What helps you stick to your goals?

  • What helps you stay motivated?

  • How do you prefer to be recognized at work?

 

Identify your resources: 

In these early days, it's tempting to put your head down and get to work. But you can only be the "new person" once! This means it's a great opportunity to lean into newness and start introducing yourself to the people who will help you be successful in your role.

To prioritize who you should meet with, ask yourself the following questions. 

  • Who will you be working with on a daily basis? What is their work style? What expectations do they have for the projects you'll be working on? What drives them or motivates them? What do they do for fun in their free time? The more you can learn early on, the stronger your relationship will be when you need to slog through challenging projects together.

  • Which teams will influence your work or impact your success? Who should you speak with on those teams?

  • Who has been with this team the longest? What can they tell you about best practices within the team culture (i.e., what time to people get to the office? what time do they typically leave? do they answer emails after hours or do you need to get your questions in before 6p rolls around?)

  • Who impacts your metrics for success? While we always want to be measured on our own abilities, our team members influence our success.