Integrating yourself into a new job and your new responsibilities isn’t always easy. There are a number of pitfalls that await you if you’re not careful, and failure could come quickly no matter how talented you are.
Whether you’re an executive, a manager, or an entry-level worker, you will need to get up to speed quickly. Here are five common traps you must avoid to make a smooth transition:
1. Don’t Isolate Yourself. Every new position is challenging, and it is common to dive head-first into your new job. This can keep you isolated from your new surroundings and co-workers. Instead, start networking with your new co-workers and learn more about them, their roles, work flow, priorities, and expectations.
2. Don’t Be a Know-it-all. In a new job, you haven’t proven anything yet, and being a know-it-all will just turn off many co-workers and label you as smug, arrogant, and uncooperative. Instead, be an eager listener and learner, and you will impress others by how quickly you learn, how easily you adapt, and how you have improved the operation.
3. Don’t Link Up with the Wrong People. As a new hire, it’s easy to form quick opinions about who is a mover or who is ineffective. Hold onto these thoughts and avoid the trap of identifying these people and linking up with them prematurely. Not everything is what it seems, and time eventually will indicate the best people with whom to collaborate.
4. Don’t Be Wimpy. Being vague, uncertain, or wishy-washy can immediately doom your effectiveness, especially if you’re hired to be a leader in an executive or managerial position. You must be clear in your objectives, mission, and direction. This, too, applies to all entry-level workers who should be precise in their work, queries, and messaging.
5. Don’t Form Early Opinions. It’s common to start your new job with preconceived ideas. Instead of thinking that you know how things will be, keep an open mind. This will help you see things as they are (and let you adapt to them) and learn better how your new office operates, how your co-workers collaborate, and what their expectations are of you.