"Be a sponge"... and other advice for the first 30 days of a new job

Starting a new job can be tough.  I recently started a new job and some of the basic advice I learned years ago still applied.  I figured I'd share the information living in my head, and also all over the internet:

Your first day
  • Wake up early and have a great breakfast, and dress for success!
  • Arrive 10 minutes early, but no earlier than 20 minutes – play it cool
  • Give yourself some time to get settled
  • Take notes, say hello and smile!
  • Learn your co-workers names quickly
  • Ask questions and ask for help
  • Don’t be the first person to ask about lunch – see what everyone else does.  Take the opportunity to go to lunch with your boss and co-workers
  • If you’re asked out after work, try to say yes – you may be tired but it’ll be worth it in the long run
  • Update your LinkedIn and other Social Media, and connect with your new colleagues


Your first 90 days
  • Learn about your boss – how does she like to assign work? What’s her communication style (email, in person, phone)? What does she expect from you in the first 30-60-90 days?
  • Start showing the rest of the company why you got hired
  • Balance relationships and results – you want to make friends, make sure you establish yourself as a reliable team player who delivers results
  • Keep the past in the past – don’t reference your old job too much, it will get old fast
  • Avoid office politics and gossip
  • You have two ears and one mouth for a reason – listen more than you talk
  • Stay organized and set goals for your first 30-60-90 days
  • Find your go-to convenience store and lunch spot – just in case!
  • Exercise!  Not just in the first 30-60-90 days, but well into your career.  You’ll be fresh, more alert, less stressed and happier.  Take care of yourself first!


But make sure you don't... 
  • Ignore the culture – come in early and stay a little late just to observe how people behave.  When do they get coffee? What time is lunch? How do they wrap up their day?
  • Act arrogant – take time to understand the company and how things work
  • Hide out – Take time to network with your new co-workers, what do they do outside of work?
  • Rock the boat – get buy-in from others before you implement changes, and make sure you fully understand the current processes and procedures before suggesting your changes

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