Tips For Starting A New Job
I realized recently that in the ten years that I’ve been part of the working force, I’ve held ten jobs. Ten jobs in ten years? I surprised myself with that realization. While that may not qualify me for giving tips on keeping a job, it does give some credence to my experience on starting new jobs.
First, I have to admit that I loathe starting a new job. I don’t particularly like that awkward beginning stages where I’m not sure what I’m doing and I don’t know my coworkers very well. I like being comfortable and knowing my job, as I’m sure most would enjoy more than being in the dark. So, with that in mind, I’d like to offer some tips for starting a new job.
Make a great first impression. The saying goes, “You only get one chance to make a great first impression,” and while that may be true, it’s not like you ruin your chance of ever being liked if you don’t make a good impression. It’s just much harder to get on someone’s good side if you start off on their bad side. Ways to make a bad impression: Being offensive, pushy, arrogant, lying, misrepresentation. You get the drill. Be courteous, pleasant and polite, but also be yourself. You’re going to be working with these people (hopefully) for a long period of time. Don’t start off on the wrong foot.
Keep any controversial debate to yourself for the first few weeks – don’t start ranting your political, social, etc., views right off the bat. That isn’t to say you shouldn’t have a personality or share your views, but don’t come off as abrasive and unflinching. You may find yourself without peers if you push them away.
Ask questions. In most cases, you’re not expected to know everything immediately, so ask if you’re not sure. It’ll only make you appear eager to learn, and while you’re at it, make sure you’re learning the proper way to do things. Don’t listen to coworkers who say, “Well, we’re not supposed to do it this way, but . . .” Learn the right way and don’t be afraid to ask questions when you’re not sure about something.
Be flexible, but not a pushover. It’s important to be pleasant and a team player, but make sure you’re not being taken advantage of at the same time. Many coworkers, especially seasoned ones, may look for opportunities to get the new person to do all the work. Don’t let this happen to you, and if it seems like it may be happening, talk to someone about it. Find a manager or supervisor, explain that you’re not trying to cause strife or discord, (also, that you don’t want to cause animosity between coworkers) but you feel you may be getting the short end of the stick from coworkers. If needed, express the desire to remain anonymous. You don’t want to start a war, but you shouldn’t deal with any type of abuse in a work situation.
Starting a new job can be very stressful, but just keep an open mind, be eager to learn, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. You’ll be a pro at the position in no time!