So, you’ve landed the job and can’t wait to start. Maybe you celebrated over drinks with friends and family. You picked out your first-day outfit and set your alarm two hours earlier than you need to. You show up to your first day of your new job with a sense of pride and a bit of nervousness—after all, you are starting a new chapter. The first bunch of hours goes by…you are either feeling a warm welcome knowing exactly what will happen next or you may feel alone and like a fish out of water. Whatever the case may be, know that starting a new job is tough for anyone. While it’s exciting, it’s also a big transition that requires patience, an open mind, and maintaining the trust with your gut that encouraged you to take the job in the first place. Since the pandemic, people have also had to start remotely. Some companies have done a great job of onboarding new employees remotely and others haven’t quite mastered it yet. With that said, regardless of how you are starting–whether in person or remote – here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- You will likely feel like a fish out of water (and that’s perfectly normal): We are creatures of habit and when you have to create new habits, meet new people, and learn new systems, it can all be very overwhelming, but it can also be a path forward for growth. Know that you won’t always feel this way and it will just take time and hard work to get used to the newness of it all. It’s very normal to feel buyer’s remorse within the first few weeks of starting a new job. You may think to yourself “Why did I ever start looking?” or “Did I really have it that bad before?” Which leads to the next piece of advice when starting a new job.
- Trust your gut: There is a reason or potentially many reasons, you decided to look for a new job in the first place–maybe you didn’t see a path forward for you, you wanted more money or specific responsibilities. Whatever the reasons are, keep a list of those handy so you can remember why you made this change in the first place. It’s very easy to forget when you are in the moment feeling a bit uncomfortable with the change of a new job. Don’t lose focus on your intentions. You might not feel instant gratification; you may even feel regret, but give it at least a few months before making a snap judgment.
- Keep an open mind: When starting a new job, it’s easy to look at how other companies and teams do things and think that whatever you did prior is better. While that may end up being true, keep an open mind and give it time to better understand why things are done the way they are done, there is usually a good reason why. However, there are certainly times when processes can improve. If, after understanding why things are done the way they are you still feel like you have a better solution, add value by sharing your experiences. It’s rare when everything clicks on day one or even day 20, but if you made an intentional move for the long term, you owe it to yourself to be patient and give yourself the time to learn something new.
Job searches are tough, interviewing is tough, and it all takes a lot of time and energy. When you decide to take a new job, give yourself the space to see through the first six months. Regardless of if it works out or not, every experience is an opportunity to learn either what you like or don’t like and will continue to have an impact on your career journey. Not to mention the networking opportunities as well.