Starting a new job can always be intimidating, particularly if you’re making an industry change. Approximately 55% of the American workforce is expected to look for new jobs over the next year according to a survey published by Bankrate. This staggering percentage is mostly due to the rippling effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re still learning the ways that the pandemic will reshape our lives that we might not have imagined in the early months of 2020.
With that being said, a new job still comes with new schedules, new bosses, new coworkers…new everything. It’s normal to be nervous on the first day of a new job, like a school child on the eve of that first day back in class. However, starting a new job while living through a pandemic has its own new set of challenges. Here are some ways that you can help yourself be successful while navigating through uncharted working conditions.
One of the biggest covid-related challenges is that now more people are working remotely, and companies are limiting the amount of in-person social interaction we have. This can make interviewing, on-boarding, and communication more difficult. It’s easy for things to fall through the cracks but you can help facilitate a smooth transition by being open and flexible.
- Stay on top of all communications. In the early days of on-boarding, check your emails frequently, including your junk mail.
- In a time where face-to-face interactions are limited, over-communicating (via phone and/or email) is always a safe bet.
- Asking questions is important to being successful. If you’re confused or if you were expecting an email, you haven’t received yet, reach out to your point of contact and see if there’s something that’s missing.
Culture & Technology
One of the best ways to become successful within a company is to submerge yourself into their culture. This can be particularly tricky if you find yourself working remotely with your new team. Always actively participate in any kind of group meeting or group work; this will be your best way to build a strong bond with your new team. You should be open to new forms of communication. If your new company utilizes a messaging system that you are not familiar with, spend some extra time getting to know the systems in place and ask questions if you’re feeling behind. Being an active employee will make you feel like you’re a part of the team in no time.
Another key is setting yourself up for success by setting goals and training objectives. These can be personal goals, or you can work with your new boss to create goals together. Make sure your objectives are realistic and give yourself a completion date. Having goals that range from one month, to six months, to a year can help you prioritize and move more efficiently down your list. Don’t be too incredibly hard on yourself if you don’t hit every goal by a certain date; keep working towards your ultimate achievements. Once you’ve completed your goals, make sure you are setting new goals as well; there is always opportunity for growth and development.
Overall, transitioning to a new job is rewarding even if it’s intimidating; but there are some key takeaways to get started on the right foot: be flexible, communicate with your new team, and set yourself up for success.