Transition to a new job Phase 3 – getting up to speed

1525888691Did you read “The first 90 days”? It’s the best book ever written about the transition process of a newly appointed person, whether it’s a new leadership role, a new job, or a new team. The principle there is that you have 90 days to prove.¬†

They should have entitled it “The first 30 days”.

I’ve just completed Day 21 of my transition to a new job, and I can vouch that phase 3 is all about hard work.
At the beginning, you’re taken very lightly. Everyone is nice, they take the time to explain, you meet lots of new people, and you ask a lot of questions.

Then you start having the cultural shock. I moved to a company that is (in theory at least) very similar to my previous employer…and still had the trouble of not fitting in. Starting with the obvious – dress code – and going¬† to the less obvious – internal jokes and how to deal with people.

Finally, after a few weeks, there’s the stage where you start delivering.

At the beginning it’s small stuff – but if you’re lucky like me, you might find yourself in the middle of strategies, where you need to contribute. And you have a choice – to either back out and say “I’m sorry, I’m new and can’t really handle this right now”, or to jump in the deep water.

Take a wild guess which is the right choice.

First learnings:
I stopped reading my emails (thankfully, I didn’t receive many anyway).
I worked in half-days or even full days on certain topics.
After coming from a highly fragmented job, where requests would pop in every minute, to work on just two big projects in one week was – almost – luxury.
I stopped checking email, internet, and Google Reader (I have a lag of hundreds of blog posts).
I read less and started mixing data and reports.
I started emitting judgments and suppositions. Of course, got my head knocked on the wall several times. But that’s the process of learning.

And – surprise – somewhere along the way, I started to fit in.

Now off to a well deserved weekend :) !

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  • Kelvin
    October 18, 2012

    Hi, liked your post very much. I could relate to what’s happening at work (shifting into another position). Did help in preparing myself for the change.


  • Maria
    October 21, 2012

    Hi Kelvin, thanks for the nice words! Good luck with your transition! I hope you read “The first 90 Days” book, it helps in this process.

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