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New Job - Now What?

You did it! You landed that perfect position and your first day of the new job is coming up.  With it is all the awkwardness of learning the ropes and crossing your fingers that your co-workers are going to welcome you into “the family.”  So, how do make sure this transition is a success?

 Believe it or not, there is a tried and true method of making these vital first weeks/month a success. In fact it just takes a little communication and 4 little steps.

 1. Find who you would communicate with on a routine basis.

 Is this the receptionist? Your direct boss? Your bosses boss? Your subordinates? The payroll clerk? HR Manager?  This can vary depending upon your role within the organization.  For example, if you are a receptionist, you are probably going to need to communicate with not only all the staff at one point or another, but you are also going to start needing to get into good communication with the clients – especially “the regulars.”    If you’re the finance director, your going to want to find out who the HR Manager, who the CFO is and perhaps who your contact person is at the local bank.

 You may ask “what does find out who you would communication with, mean?” Well, it means just that. Who are you going to need to give information to or get information from on a routine basis? Let’s take the example of the Finance Director, ask the questions:  “Who do I deal with when I need to talk with the bank?” “When I have questions about someone’s time sheet, who in the HR department handles that?”  etc.

 2. Make yourself known to those people.

 Don’t sit around and assume they know who you are. Seek them out. Introduce yourself, tell them your name, what your official job title, what you’re going to produce for the company. Be pro-active in learning who everyone is, starting out with those you will need to deal with on a routine basis. But make sure they know not only your name but your job function as well!

 3. Discover from those people you found in point #1 above what they need and want from you. 

Yep, that’s right; you are the “suggestion department” right now.   This is where you are active in learning what’s expected rather then learning by trial and error; which is really not the way to ensure job security, especially if you are like most people and are under a probationary period.  This is also a way to start establishing a good reputation for yourself – starting on day one.

 This is also the point where you find out from the payroll clerk where and when THEY would like to have your time sheet turned into (just because Joe Schmidt has been there “forever” and he always does it a certain way, this may not be the correct way and thus the accounting department ever-so-innocently, “misplaces” his paycheck and “miraculously” finds it 5 minutes after he leaves on Friday evening).  Find out from the HR Manager what time breaks are taken, from your Boss if he/she wants you to send them a weekly report, does the receptionist want you to let him/her know when you’re leaving the building?  Etc.

 4. DO, PRODUCE, and PRESENT what you found in step 3.

 Don’t just listen to what people need and want, DO IT. Show them you heard and understand by DEMONSTRATING your understanding.  Make sure the boss doesn’t have to chase up your weekly report, make sure your time sheet is exactly how the accounting department asked them to be done and be sure that you get it in when they want it. Become the receptionist favorite person to work for because your calls are so easy to deal with as the people calling in are always given correct information and thus never get upset.

  Getting off on the right foot is vital to creating a long and stable career with any company.  Make sure you stay pro-active in learning the ropes and not become a victim of a frustrated HR Manager because you made every error in the book – and you just walked in the door! 

 Remember, just because in your mind you have arrived, doesn’t mean that you have. Until you do the above your still “non-existant” as far as others are concerned.

 So there you have it, you know what to do now. I’m sure you are going to be a great success!

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