How to Set Yourself Up for Success in a New Role

Have you ever been faced with a new opportunity, but felt like you weren’t quite qualified for it? You’re not alone. Believe it or not the person in charge of one of, if not the most, recognizable brands in the world once felt the same. In his commencement address to Stanford University’s class of 2019, Apple CEO Tim Cook admitted that when he first took on his role, he felt this exact same way. For those just entering the workforce or in the early stages of your career, this may be an all-too-common feeling.

After all, it is hard to truly feel prepared when you read various entry level job descriptions that require experience beyond your years. Even after landing an opportunity, there may be a learning curve and it may seem like you will never truly understand all that the role entails. I’m here to tell you that these feelings of constantly being overwhelmed will indeed dissipate.

When you’re starting a new role, you want to prove that the company made the right decision in hiring you so you will do all you can to be successful. Although you may feel like you’re drinking through a fire hose with all the information, there are certainly some things you can do to ensure your success.

In an article for Forbes, Caroline Ceniza-Levine provides some tips that will help set a solid foundation for future career success. You can read the full article here and check out a few highlights below:

Start before you start

Often times when you get an offer letter for your new job, you will also get some new-hire paperwork to fill out. This can usually be done prior to your first day in order to save some time on your first day. In addition to getting a head start on your paperwork, you can do some research beyond your interview prep on the company so you can know what to expect. You will likely have an idea of what the company culture is already, but for your first day, it is usually better to be over dressed than underdressed. Make sure you have an understanding of what time you are expected to be there and what is expected of you day one.

Confirm how your manager would like to communicate

Depending on your office size, there are likely various methods of communication within it; IM, phone, face-to-face, etc. To truly understand how to communicate with your boss, ask him or her what their preferred method is. If you report to multiple people, they might all have different preferred methods. Figuring this out day one will set the standard for the rest of your time with the company and you won’t have to worry about how to reach a manager.

Take five with your group

It is no secret that we spend more time at work than almost anywhere else. Since we spend so much time in the office, you might as well get to know your colleagues and those who you work with. In your first week, while you are getting used to the job and new environment, try to have lunch or interact with those around you. Your peers or coworkers can help get you up to speed on what is going on in the office and can be a valuable resource going forward.

Wrap Up

Luckily, this feeling isn’t reserved for first and early career professionals. Take it from Cook, who was nearly a decade into his tenure with Apple before taking over. He said, “Graduates, the fact is that when your time comes – and it will – you’ll never be ready. But you’re not supposed to be. Find the hope in the unexpected. Find the courage in the challenge. Find your vision on the solitary road.” If you go into these new experiences with an open mind and follow these tips, you will ensure your success now and in the future.

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