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Make It Work: 5 Practical Tips for Settling Into a New Job

New job

Truth be told, 2020 was a year of chaos and changes. Some people have come face-to-face with difficult decisions involving family, school, and career matters. To be fair and even before the COVID-19 pandemic’s lockdowns and restrictions, at least 64 percent of the workforce have contemplated leaving their jobs, according to an engagement and retention report by Achievers.  

Are you one of those who have opted to take a leap of faith and pursued a career move? Whether it’s your first time doing so, it’s always great to find support and learn new ways of doing things. This article aims to help you settle into your newly found role with relative ease and efficacy.

Start with a Clean Slate

Any first day of work is understandably overwhelming as you have to get acquainted with processes, platforms, and people within a short period. Information overload is inevitable, so it helps to appear at the online meeting or in the office with an open and clear mind. Tune into the presentation and materials, take notes, ask questions, and pack a load of patience.  

Proper onboarding is critical in employee engagement, and you know you are in a good company based on how they structure the orientation to welcome and get you settled.

Settle Into the Work Comfortably

Experts say that it can take 90 days or longer to get settled into the newness of the job. A Jobvite study in 2018 revealed that more than 30 percent of new hires leave within this period. Expectations not being met, including that of company culture and exploring options were among the top reasons for quitting. 

The pressure to perform well is always on throughout your stay in the company. Being a newbie, however, can be your leverage. Take advantage of the transitional stage to establish a doable work routine, apply what you have learned so far, and manage expectations to curb disappointments that may make it tempting to quit.

Say No as Early as Now 

The 2018 Jobvite study touched on the “always-on” employee, who checks emails and works beyond and after hours. Interestingly, France has the El Khomri Law or more popularly known as the right to disconnect from work-related calls, emails, etc., when out of the office.

With or without relevant legislation, you can set boundaries between work and private time. The recruitment and hiring stages are the best time to discuss your willingness (or not) to work overtime or weekends with commensurate pay. Being able to say no can also save you stress should you be asked to take on more work or put in longer hours.  

Steer Clear of Bad Office Politics 

Office politics exists and is a tricky territory to tread on for any newbie. One may have to learn how to read the room, figure out cliques, and understand workplace dynamics. It’s safe to assume a spectator’s role for now and involve oneself in unnecessary office drama.

Playing it safe does not preclude you from making friends in the office, which can make your workday more manageable and less lonely, perhaps. Enjoy their company, listen to their rants without giving opinions, and avoid spreading rumours or disclosing idle chats to others. Just try not to pick sides in conflicts that run deep and go way back.  

Set Personal Goals

You can give yourself time to learn the ropes (see point no. 2) and, at the same time, establish goals for yourself. Showing up on time for work, clearing pending tasks before the day ends, and cutting the time needed to do a particular job are great examples.

Having personal goals helps you form habits that make your work bearable, and achieving them always gives you a sense of accomplishment. You’ll be more motivated to work with something to look forward to, staving off boredom when the tasks get too mundane. Personal goals and performance reviews go hand-in-hand in tracking your progress in your job in quantifiable terms.

Final Thoughts

Needless to say, this new job fills you with hope, excitement, and uncertainty too. After all, it’s back to square one, and you have to deal with the nerves, changes, and challenges that come with the position. You may not master all your duties overnight, but you have the ideas above to get you started and settled in no time.

What are you most nervous about when you start a new job? Let us know in the comments below!

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Aubrey i​s a writer and a regular contributor. She writes on topics on job searching and career development in hopes to provide better tips on job hunting and career development.
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