How to nail the first 30 days of a new job

Starting a new job can be an overwhelming and stressful situation. As the new kid on the block, you have a lot to learn to fit in with your new team. So whether this is your first job out of college, or you are a seasoned veteran, make sure you follow these habits to impress your new employer that first month on the job.

  1. Ask questions and observe. You will quickly want to learn how to navigate the office environment and politics.
  2. Find someone you can ask all the embarrassing little questions you don’t want to bother your manager with. A coworker can be of great value to show you how the copier works, where the best coffee shop is, and what places people like to go for lunch.
  3. Know what’s expected in your role and do your best to go above and beyond.
  4. Connect outside of the office. Eat lunch, grab coffee, and go out for happy hour with your new coworkers. Getting to know your co-workers will help make the transition smoother.
  5. Stay organized. You will be inundated with a lot of information the first few weeks at your new job. Take notes and listen carefully to instructions.
  6. Look for quick wins. What’s the biggest impact you can achieve in the shortest time, with minimal effort and resources? Tackle this project first and you’ll make a great impression on your boss.
  7. Be willing to accept grunt work at the beginning. Sometimes there is a backlog of work when you start a new job, or your manager may be too busy that week to properly train you. Doing these small, mindless tasks can help you better learn the ins and outs of the organization.
  8. At the end of the first week or month (depending on the environment), check in with your manager to discuss your performance so far. This is a great way to find out what you are excelling at and what areas you may need to focus more of your attention on.
  9. Show drive, passion, and enthusiasm. Do this by getting to work early, saying yes to projects, and participating in company sponsored events. It will show your supervisors that you are engaged and committed to succeeding in your new position.

If you’re looking for more advice on how to succeed in your new job, Michael D. Watkins’ book “The First 90 Days: Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter” is chock full of valuable advice relevant for a 21st century career.