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10 Tips for Acing the Introductory Period at Your New Job

10 Tips for Acing the Introductory Period at Your New Job

10 Tips for Acing the Introductory Period at Your New Job


You made it through several rounds of interviews, passed your background checks, received an employment offer, and started your new job; congratulations! Now it is time to embark on a journey with your new employer, and hopefully, one that will be filled with wonderful opportunities. Most employers now have new hire introductory periods where they determine if you are a good fit for the organization. This also allows you to determine if the organization is the best fit for you.

The introductory period timeline is usually company-specific and lasts anywhere from 90 days to six months. During this time, you will receive training and your new supervisor will check in with you from time to time to see that you are grasping the new job appropriately. The new hire introductory period is not meant to be intimidating, but simply allows employers to see how you are progressing in the job and whether you will be an asset to the company on a long-term basis. If you have recently been hired at a new company, here are 10 tips that will help you ace the introductory period and get the most out of your new position.

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Take Charge of Your Learning Experience

One of the best ways to stand out and to ensure you get the most out of your training period is to take charge of your learning experience. Do not just wait around for co-workers and your supervisor to show you around and give you detailed instructions on how to do certain jobs; see if there are opportunities for you just to dive in and figure out how to do the work. When you take the initiative to learn how to do your job on your own, it demonstrates that you have leadership qualities and that you are taking the job seriously. It is important to exercise good judgment on what you teach yourself as certain jobs, especially those involving machinery, require specialized training and supervisor oversight.

Avoid Workplace Drama

There is nothing like good old fashioned workplace drama to send the morale of the workplace into a downward spiral of an ugly black hole. Workplace drama should be avoided at all times, especially when you are new to a job or company. Whether you have co-workers who like to talk about other co-workers, get into heated debates, or attempt to get other co-workers into trouble, the best thing you can do is stay clear of the negativity. It is important to remember that your supervisor will be keeping an eye on you during your introductory period and you do not want to appear to be one who "adds fuel to the fire" when it comes to rumors, gossip, and other dramatic activities that cause conflicts among employees.

Take Diligent Notes

Chances are that you are going to be flooded with lots of new information during your introductory period and, therefore, it is important that you take diligent notes that you can refer to as you complete your work. Taking good notes at the beginning will alleviate the need for you to ask co-workers or your supervisor to re-explain processes and procedures. Have you ever started working on a task and got stuck somewhere along the way when there was nobody around to ask for help? The better a note-taker you are, the less you will be stuck in this uncomfortable position.

While it may be tempting to rely on technology for the note-taking process, it is usually better to take notes in a good old fashion notebook or journal. Notebooks and journals are easy to carry around and allow you to take notes while on the go. Feel free to transcribe your notes into a computer at the end of the day, or when the time is right.  

Study Your Resources

Being a good new employee means humbling yourself and becoming a good student. Even if you are continuing in an industry you already know, every company operates just a little differently. Actively seek out all of the information and resources you can find to learn about company policies and procedures, the technology used at your new company, and any other pertinent information you will need to be successful. Be proactive and study the company website and any employee-related literature.

Ask Plenty of Questions

Asking questions is a component of any learning process, and your supervisor expects that you will ask questions when something is not clear. Do not be afraid to ask questions of your supervisor or co-workers; no question is stupid! If there is no one readily available when a question comes to mind, be sure to write it down so you can remember to ask it later.

Plan for Your Future with the Company

Look beyond the introductory period at your new job and figure out how your new job fits into your future. Take advantage of all the benefits offered by your employer, whether it be medical, a 401(K), dental, and even free or low-cost learning opportunities. Does your new employer offer educational benefits? Planning for the future now will help you set a course for success in the future.

When coming up with your plan for the future, think about possible advancement opportunities. Is there a management position you would like to work toward pursuing in the future? Set some goals for yourself and cater your learning opportunities toward future advancement.

Network with Others

Being the new person gives you the opportunity to get to know your co-workers and start off on the right foot so you can learn how they became successful in their jobs. If you are starting a new career in a new industry, sign up for an account with LinkedIn, and seek out networking groups so you can learn tips and tools of the trade. Participate in community meetings and social networking groups to learn who the key players are in the industry. "Who you know" is still an important concept in many career fields, and having colleagues to turn to will only benefit you in the future.

Get Organized

Good organization is the key to success at any job, and it is especially important when you are getting situated in a new job. Whether you decide to use digital organizational tools or prefer a notebook and pen, find a method that works for you.

Depending on what type of job you have, you will need a work bag of some sort, a calendar to organize appointments and meetings, and a binder or organizer for storing notes and paperwork. The more office-oriented your job is, they more paperwork storage you will need. Organize your notes, papers, instruction sheets, and other work-related tools in such a way that you can easily get to what you need.

Get to Know Your Boss

Acing the introductory period at your new job also means pleasing your new boss and the best way to please your new boss is know his or her expectations. During your introductory period, try to schedule regular meetings with your boss so you can get to know him or her and discuss what you are doing well and what you can improve upon to have the most rewarding experience possible. Find out what the pet peeves are of your boss and what he or she expects from you. If you are not clear, be sure to ask!

Be Thankful!

You have worked hard to get to where you are and land your new job; don't forget to stop and take a moment to be appreciative of all that you have achieved. Be thankful to those who hired you, be thankful to those who helped you find your new job, and be thankful to yourself for accomplishing the mission.

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