Finding the right career and starting a new job can be really overwhelming. Your new workplace has different procedures and expectations. You meet lots of people and have a lot of names to remember. Plus, you’re worried about doing well and fitting into the culture.
Typically, the first three months are considered a trial period as you transition into the role. But there’s plenty you can do during this time to make a good impression and learn the ropes.
6 tips for starting a new job
Here are the best steps you can take during the first 90 days of a new job to set yourself up for success in your career.
1. Find out everyone’s preferred method of communication
Every company is different when it comes to communication patterns. Some managers have an open door policy, while others prefer email or chat. And some teams talk on various Slack channels throughout the day.
Don’t be afraid to ask people directly how they prefer to get requests. That way, you can make sure you don’t ruffle any feathers by choosing one method over another.
2. Invite feedback from your managers
Getting evaluated is always hard, but it’s also an opportunity to grow. To show you’re open to feedback, ask your managers for their opinions.
Find out their expectations and how you can meet them. Show that you’re proactive about learning and improving.
And if you have people reporting to you, invite their comments and ideas, as well. Taking an aggressive, top-down stance right off the bat isn’t likely to inspire loyalty from your team.
3. Set S.M.A.R.T. monthly goals
Apart from adjusting to your new workplace culture, you also want to start contributing value. To hit the ground running, try using the S.M.A.R.T. framework to set goals.
S.M.A.R.T. stands for specific, measurable, attainable, results-oriented, and time-based. Each of your goals should meet all five of these criteria.
That way, you’ll have tangible goals to work toward, as well as metrics for measuring whether or not you accomplished them.
You don’t have to set these goals in a vacuum. Ask your teammates about their expectations around productivity and output in the first few months.
4. Strive for an early win
One of the best ways to make a good impression is to make an “early win.” Michael Watkins, author of “The First 90 Days: Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter,” wrote that an early accomplishment can build credibility in the eyes of your new team.
It shows that you’re already connecting with the organization and giving your all to the new role. Just be sure you don’t take on more than you can handle.
You have to find the balance between being proactive and allowing yourself time to adapt. “As part of your broader campaign to secure early wins … keep in mind that it’s better to underpromise and overdeliver,” Watkins said.
5. Prioritize listening and learning
When you’re eager to prove yourself, it’s easy to hop in with lots of ideas and suggestions. But don’t forget to listen and learn about your new workplace.
You could rub people the wrong way if you’re always referring to how you did things in your old job. Take time to listen to others and get a lay of the land.
While you may have great ideas, don’t make assumptions without having all the facts. By making listening a priority, you’ll show that you’re flexible and open to learning new methods.
6. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Another common pitfall of new employees is being afraid to ask questions. You just put your best foot forward during the interview process — you don’t want to come off as incompetent on day one.
But if you’re going to grow with the company for the next few years, you need to get your questions answered. In most cases, asking questions shows engagement, not a lack of ability.
Often, companies will match up experienced employees with new hires to support them through the onboarding process. If your company doesn’t have this policy, perhaps you can find a co-worker to be your point person through the process.
And if someone in a senior position is open to it, you could establish a mentoring relationship. Mentorship is a great way to gain support and grow in your career.
Making the most of the first 90 days
The first few months in a new role come with all sorts of challenges. You have to learn new ways of doing things and adjust to a different culture.
“Joining a new company is akin to an organ transplant — and you’re the organ,” wrote Watkins. You must be mindful about how you adapt to your role within the larger system.
At the same time, remember to go easy on yourself. You’re not expected to know everything immediately, so don’t be afraid to ask questions and find out exactly what you can do to succeed.
Although you may feel vulnerable at first, eventually you’ll make a successful transition into your new role. And maybe in a few months, you’ll be helping the next new employee through their onboarding experience.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2018!
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1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.97% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.47% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.23% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of Month/Day/Year, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 08/21/18. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on ourstudent loan refinance product.
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2 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
Savings example: average savings calculated based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were disclosed. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
Application detail: 5 minutes indicates typical time it takes to complete application with applicant information readily available. It does not include time taken to provide underwriting decision or funding of the loan.
Instant rates mean a delivery of personalized rates for those individuals who provide sufficient information to return a rate. For instant rates a soft credit pull will be conducted, which will not affect your credit score. To proceed with an application, a hard credit pull will be required, which may affect your credit score.
Total savings calculated by aggregating individual average savings across total borrower population from 9/2013 to 12/2017. Individual average savings calculation based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were provided. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.47% – 6.99%3||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit SoFi|
|2.47% – 6.23%1||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Earnest|
|2.47% – 8.03%4||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Lendkey|
|2.95% – 6.37%2||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Laurel Road|
|2.48% – 6.25%5||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit CommonBond|
|2.72% – 8.32%6||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Citizens|