Losing a job is unpleasant. Especially with bills to pay. It creates uncertainty and doubt, not to mention a sense of hopelessness and despondency. But the bills keep coming and the desire to find work doesn’t wane.
And while you may find yourself procrastinating at first, you will eventually get into the rhythm of job hunting. After all, you haven’t got much choice.
Which leads to a job, when then leads to finding yourself the new person in an alien work environment.
Coronavirus-related job loss in America is estimated to have affected between 20 and 40 million people as of June. And while most have been forced to file for unemployment support, there are many who have managed to find a new job.
There are stories on sites like the New York Times, CNBC, and the BBC detailing what it’s like to start a new job in these crazy, trying times. About the odd sense of displacement that comes with starting a job remotely, and how there is actually more to adjust to, when working from home.
After all, when you’re in an office, it’s easy to be introduced around. Easy to ask questions, and quickly establish the chain of command and the level of expectations. Working remotely makes that difficult. Even if it’s part time in the office and part time at home, this can still be disorientating.
And this can make it hard to get motivated and build momentum and settle into a routine.
It can be difficult to orientate yourself in a new job at the best of times. But during a global pandemic that’s forcing many companies to adapt or perish? Here are some tips for kickstarting your week in a new job. These tips will work whether your new job is in-office or remotely.
It pays to familiarize yourself as much as possible in your first weeks. If you’re in the office, this can be as simple as spending a few minutes with the colleagues closest to you and then slowing getting to know everyone else. This will help you get to know everyone, understand the lay of the land, and be beneficial as time goes on.
If you’re working remotely, this is a little harder to do. Most companies with remote workers use an internal messaging platform of one kind or another. Whether it’s simply Google’s messenger service, or a task management software’s internal messaging; it’s a good idea to get on and start introducing yourself.
While it may be harder to do remotely, it is ideal to talk with people and become as familiar as possible with your new workplace.
While your past experience will have some value, it’s always a good idea to start your job fresh. Just because you did work a certain way in your last job, doesn’t mean that’s how your new job does things.
It pays to ask questions. Especially, ones about the proper way of delivering work, and processes that may be idiosyncratic to your new workplace. Pay close attention to any on-boarding or orientation material or introductory meetings you are given.
Right now, induction meetings are more important than ever before. Companies need new employees to understand how things are done in a way that allows them to hit the ground running.
The best thing you can do is to find who is going to be doing the induction and have a chat with them before-hand (if possible). Ask for suggestions, advice and what’s the most important thing to prioritize in your first weeks on the job.
During the first few weeks keep a list of what you need to learn. It could be anything from new skills to general company-related information.
Obviously, some information needs to be prioritized first. For example, if the company uses particular software, like a task management software. It’s probably better if you pay attention and get to grips with that rather than memorizing everyone’s names and roles.
Task management software can be one of the most effective tools you come across. This will help get you organized and stay organized. The right task management software will also make it easier to communicate with colleagues and understand your role in a project.
The worst thing a new person can do is assume they have all the answers. Especially, if those answers are based on how they did it at their old job. When in a new place the easiest and surest way to get up to speed is task many, many questions.
This not only shows initiative, but it shows you care about getting things done properly the first time.
When asking all the questions you can think of, it’s important you direct them at the right person. Ideally, you want some battle-hardened veteran of the workplace.
They’ve been there long enough to know what does work, what doesn’t work; and why. The veteran will know the office politics and lingo. They’ll have answers because they’ve been where you are. And, they’ve helped other new people already. Which means they are used to helping new people, and usually—sometimes begrudgingly—they are very good at it.
This is not always possible. But if you can get some one-on-one time with your boss, it can be an invaluable experience. Getting information and expectations directly from the horse’s mouth can be important for your continued success.
Knowing how often you should communicate with your boss, and in what format will put you in good stead.
It can also help humanize you to your new boss. Instead of just being another employee that HR or whoever hired, you became a tangible person rather than a name on the outgoing spend spreadsheet.
If you’re starting a job in-office and people invite you to lunch, do it. You can always eat your packed lunch another day.
Lunchtime is when people are more relaxed, and willing to talk. Also, accepting an invite demonstrates that you’re ready and willing to mingle with your colleagues. This is the ideal way of making a good impression.
Scoring quick wins can be a great way to show your value. Not only to your new company, but also to reassure yourself. Talking to veterans and bosses can be a great way to find out how to quickly and effectively make an impact with some wins early on.
Not only are quick wins good for the company, but they’re a good way to stay motivated.
Cliché, but true. Being is hard enough without trying to be someone else. After all, this is your new job, your livelihood, being yourself is the easiest way of being consistent.
It will let people know what to expect today, tomorrow, and in a month from now.
One fear you may have as a new employee is not being able to justify your job. Especially if you have been made redundant from your previous work. Oddly enough, this can lead to procrastination if there’s not the right direction or transparency around what’s expected.
Because sometimes fear of failure causes people to freeze up. Instead of tackling what’s in front of them, they see everything that needs to be done, which makes prioritizing difficult. In the ten tips above, we have offered suggestions on how to cope with this.
Learn more on how to procrastinate properly.
But one way that is arguably the most helpful for both employer and employee is setting an agenda through task management software. It breaks down a project into lists and sublists, making sure the right people are assigned to each task. With internal chat features and other helpful productivity features, task management software is the easiest of integrating into a new work environment.
Where some new team members may be slow off the blocks, having a productivity tool specifically designed to ensure work is completed in the correct order and to the deadline is a great way of making it easy for new team members to slot in as efficient members of staff.
Setting your own agenda will also help you stay accountable and productive.
This is why it’s so important to ask all the questions, and prioritizing learning any software your new job uses. By diving in and learning as much as possible, you can become as effective and efficient as you know you are.
If you follow these simple tips, you can have a much easier time settling into a new job successfully.