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Starting out in a new job is exciting and it can be daunting too. Even if your new position is similar to your previous role there’s always so much to learn. In the first three months of your new job it’s vital to learn the ropes and establish yourself. Below are the key factors that will set you up for success.

Onboarding variations

Every company has a different standard of onboarding. If you’re lucky, you’re new company knows the importance of onboarding for helping new recruits to succeed. The onboarding process should ensure that you’re across the systems and cultural norms of your place of work. Any major do’s and don’ts should be conveyed to you. Ideally, there will be someone checking in on you and your progress every couple of weeks. You should be receiving feedback on the work you’re doing and what expectations are moving forward. Good onboarding requires that you are getting the training, support and encouragement required to meet the demands of your new role. There should also be an emphasis on forging connections with colleagues and learning company culture.

The below five tips are for anyone starting out in a new role and they’ll be particularly useful if your new company doesn’t have a great onboarding process.

1. Make a great first impression

As the saying goes, ‘you never get a second chance to make a first impression’. It really is important that you set the right tone for your future success. Be aware of how you’re presenting yourself and make sure you are focussing on doing the best job you can. For example, it’s important to build rapport with your colleagues but you don’t want to be drawn into any office dramas. You may have an impressive CV but your colleagues and boss will be noticing your behaviour at work more than anything, so be mindful.

2. Communicate

If your new company hasn’t provided you with full clarity on what you need to be doing, then you need to ask. Without meaning to, sometimes colleagues will train you in a way that assumes knowledge you don’t have, or they forget to tell you something essential to achieving your objective. Now is the time to ask considered questions and establish good communication channels. You should also be seeking feedback on your progress and what’s expected of you, so that you have a sense of how your employer thinks you’re doing. Believe it or not, there are people who are surprised when they don’t pass probation, you don’t want to be one of those people.

3. Learn everything you can

Let’s face it, new jobs can make us feel far less productive than usual. While we learn new systems, we’re slower at tasks than we’ll eventually be. That’s okay. Most employers expect this, but make sure it doesn’t cause you to stagnate for longer than it should. Keep the momentum going and strive to keep learning and improving. Be aware of the timeframes that are expected of you so that you can meet these expectations. You also set yourself up for success by demonstrating enthusiasm, willingness to learn and hard work.

4. Be humble while also celebrating your successes

Humility is a highly valuable quality in the workplace. People who are humble tend to be better listeners and are more empathetic. Consider whether you’re someone who needs to keep your ego in check. For instance, if you have support staff, are you treating them with enough respect? Or ask yourself when a colleague is talking, are you truly listening or are you waiting for your turn to speak so you can brag about something you did? Being proud of what you’ve achieved and celebrating your successes are welcome but a belief that you are better than others will not serve you.

5. Connect with your colleagues and the company culture

Unless you work entirely remotely, you’ll be spending a fair a chunk of your time working alongside colleagues. So it makes sense to establish solid connections with them. Try to always be polite and professional. Finding common interests can be a good ice-breaker, as well as getting involved in company events. Especially in your first three months, you should always ‘opt in’ if there are opportunities to network within your industry. Building a support framework of trusted colleagues and establishing a network within your field of work will help you on your path to success.