Top Ten Tips for Surviving Your First Week In Your New Job
Starting a new job with a new company can be absolutely terrifying…whether it’s your first position or your fifth. But with these key rules, you can get comfortable in your new surroundings, get up to speed quickly, and get off on the right foot with your new boss and co-workers.
- Be a sponge; One of your most important duties your first week is absorbing everything. Getting to know your company’s culture, the working and communication styles of your teammates, the problem projects, office politics, and department or company-wide goals means that you’ll be able to start your real work sooner (and be more effective when you do)
- If available, go to the new hire orientation, sign up for professional development classes, and attend all the team and office meetings you can, even if you’re not yet sure what’s going on or they don’t 100% pertain to your work
- Join informal events. If you get asked to lunch, or drinks say yes. It’s a great way to meet people, and it shows that you’re excited to be part of the team
- Don’t overcommit yourself; the last thing you want is to look like you have too much to juggle, seem overwhelmed, or show up late to a commitment because you’re stuck somewhere else.
- Ask lots of questions. Also take down detailed notes about everything you learn, even if it seems simple. Your brain is going to be on overload this week, and writing everything down will make sure you don’t have to ask the same question twice
- Don’t be afraid to speak up; At the same time, don’t be afraid to contribute and add value—you do want to reinforce that you’re the right person for the job
- Offer to help. There may be some down time during your first few days on the job as your boss and team adjust to having you there. But don’t sit around waiting for others to figure out tasks for you—volunteer to help your new teammates on a project
- Don’t turn down help or advice. If your boss or colleagues give you advice or offer to help you with a task or project, take them up on it, even if you’re totally capable of handling things yourself. It’s a great way to bond with your office mates, plus you may get valuable insight into the company’s expectations or a more efficient way to do the work you’ll be given
- Keep your boss informed throughout the week. Ask for periodic meetings with your boss. (In addition to getting direction on projects and tasks, you should use this time to update him/her on what you’re learning and who you’re meeting with
- Ask questions like “Are there additional tasks I should be taking on or skills I should be learning?” and “Can you give me feedback on the project I just completed?” to show initiative, but also do a lot of listening, too. Don’t: Compare everything to your last job. You’re in a new place, and this is a new opportunity, so embrace it and move forward