I started a new job about 3 weeks ago, that’s one of the reasons why I’ve been a little quiet on the site in the last month, the other reason is, I have been managing a marketing campaign outside of work, I will be writing a blog about it next week or so, but you can visit the other site here: Pencil Pilots.
Following on from the last job related blog that I wrote, regarding searching for Jobs and interviewing, I thought it would be a good idea to write up about starting a new job, getting used to the schedule, getting on with new people, new situations.
Ok, so you got the job, and of course you’re gonna be really happy, especially if like me you have sent out 100s of applications, and almost 100 C.V.s (resumes to the americans C.V.=Curriculum Vitae), as well as spending a couple of depressing months wondering why you haven’t found a job yet. You can be happy, but when you walk into the job, don’t be cocky, everyone else got a job there too, but they’ve been there longer, so you’re nothing new, and you have no idea how the office culture works. Be friendly, but not too friendly, you don’t want to creep people out, you will get to know everyone eventually, let things happen naturally.
One of the first hurdles that you are going to overcome, especially if you haven’t had a job in a while, is getting up early. Your body gets used to the amount of sleep you take, whether you need it or not. In order to get up on time, you may need to start going to bed early, to wake up early and you can gradually adjust it until you’re getting around 8 hours a night, that’s all the body really needs. It will be difficult at first, on my third day I was in bed at 10, I couldn’t stay awake, and it was glorious sleep (over 9 hours), another thing that helps, is instead of a buzzer or bell, use a radio to wake up, nothing gets you up like Macklemore & lewis screaming in your ear at 7:30 in the morning. Also, make sure you know exactly how long you need to get ready in the morning, and how long the trip to work will take, factoring the early morning traffic.
Just like you when you went in for the interview or interviews, the first impression is very important, now I’m not saying you should bring presents for the whole office, but you should wear the same type of outfit that you wore to the interview. You probably won’t need to wear a suit to work everyday, and a lot of offices nowadays that don’t see clients on a regular basis will usually wear normal everyday ‘street clothes’ to work. But, when you’re starting off wearing more formal clothes, until you know what the office norm is.
The office community is, believe it or not a lot like family. You spend more waking hours with your coworkers monday to Friday than you do with partners, family friends etc. So, when you start a new job, or in a new office, you’re a bit like a newborn, people are both a little excited and a little apprehensive about you. I find that on top of being friendly, you should be quiet for the first week or two, don’t be a mute, but try to keep your head down, until you have gotten to know the people and are familiar with the office culture.
When you are in a job in general, try not to impress people by overworking, you might end up setting a precedent you can’t keep up. Also, don’t just agree to everything people ask you to do, I’m not saying don’t do what you’re asked, but when you’re new, people might try and take advantage, if you’re not familiar with the work, don’t know how to do it, or are very busy with previously allocated work, explain to them the situation, if it is work they should be doing, they won’t make a scene, to try and get you to do their work. What I’m saying is don’t overstretch yourself, you’ll end up making mistakes or not getting work done, which will negatively affect your career. The office can be a bit of a battlefield at times, especially if people with certain personalities are present (if I was to go through this, I would need another blog, maybe in the future).
In order to get to know people better, try and let it happen naturally, don’t just but in on a conversation, or rock up to someone’s desk out of the blue. In most offices non-work conversations will pop up from time to time, when you’re new in the office you can’t really get in on most of these, but an easy way is around the water cooler, or in the kitchen (coffee is like a drug in most offices, people will take plenty of coffee breaks throughout the day 3+), if you see a conversation happen in the kitchen (or wherever) give yourself a reason why you should be there: coffee, water, lunch etc. and try and work yourself naturally into the convo.
Hope I made sense, taught you something and was at least a little enjoyable 😉