So, you’re the new kid on the block, huh? It’s natural to feel like a fish out of water and worry about making a good impression with your boss and coworkers. Here are common concerns people share with me after they’ve started a new job plus advice on how to settle in for the long haul.
Issue: They have a totally different way of doing things.
Solution: Whether it is just processes and procedures or a totally new agency management system, you can only overcome this by learning. Write out a cheat-sheet for yourself to help remember steps, spend extra time on the systems just doing test work for yourself, or spend lunch shadowing a veteran who can teach you the ropes. Once you learn, it all becomes second nature, just like in your last agency.
Issue: The people are very different.
Solution: Well, you had to see this coming. You left friends and these are people you barely know. Of course, those friends were once people you didn’t know and that all worked out; right? So too will this if you give it time. Take small steps to acquaint yourself with new people, learn about them, and find commonality. You cannot replace time so set realistic expectations and put in the time to build those relationships.
Issue: I already messed something up.
Solution: Own it. Whether it was misjudging the commute and being late, making an error in a file change, or something else, own it. A good boss/employer didn’t expect you to be perfect. We’ve all been new, and it takes time. Making excuses and/or trying to hide in hope nobody notices make it worse. Proactively own and address it and you’ll be fine.
Of course, there are many other issues that can arise but in general, giving things time and having reasonable expectations will give you the best opportunity to work through it. If you feel you’ve made a mistake in joining the company, know you’re not alone. Many people react that way as they settle in and work through the newness of it all. If, over time, that feeling persists, it may be symptomatic of a bigger issue and you should start to consider specific concerns and if they warrant leaving. Again, being reasonable and thoughtful, disregarding the emotion of it, will often help you come to the right conclusion.