Optical Women’s Association

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6 Things I Did in My First 30 Days at a New Job

Last month I made the tough, but exciting, choice to take the next step in my career and move into a new role at a new company. It had been ten years since I changed jobs and I was feeling like a student going off to a new school with first day jitters, and it had been a long time since I’ve had that feeling. It was a big decision to leave the comfort of my previous job where I had grown familiar with the day-to-day and built so many strong relationships over the years. Now that I’m 30 days into my new role I want to share 6 things I did to set myself up for success and get comfortable in my new role.

Create A 30-60-90 Plan

This happened during the interview phase, as my final step in the process. It allowed me to create my own onboarding plan and get expectations from my manager ahead of time on what would be expected of me during my first 30,60, and 90 days at the new job. It also helped give me a sense of purpose and know what I would be taking on to set myself up for success in the new job.

Listen, And Then Listen Some More

Lucky for me, this one came naturally as I tend to be a listen-first type of person. I’ve learned from experience that my least favorite thing a person coming into a new role can do is be a bull in a china shop. I’ve spent my first 30 days setting up meetings across various departments in the company learning where they see success, where they see struggles, and how marketing can plan a role in improving goals and processes within their departments.

Set Expectations

Your first 30 days on the job is a great time to set expectations, whether it’s for how you interact with your team, how your manager prefers to communicate, and even work-life boundaries. Setting these expectations up from the start allows you to be on the same page from the get-go and eliminates the need to back-track and have to re-align on certain areas of how you work and how you best work with others for efficiency and success.

Understand How Performance Is Measured

Getting a good understanding how performance is measured for yourself, your team, and the company as a whole will allow you a strong path forward for setting goals and KPIs that are important to keep track of. In some cases, you might learn that performance isn’t being measured and you’re allowed the opportunity to decide what’s best for you and your team to be measured on. Whatever the situation is, make sure you ask questions around performance and get a head start on creating SMART goals you can achieve.

Look For A Couple Of Small Wins

One of the biggest traps that is easy to fall into when starting a new job, is taking on too much too soon. It can be very natural to feel that you need to make a noticeable impact right away and hit the ground running, but this can also pin you into some difficult situations if you bite off more than you can chew. Oftentimes, a couple of small wins will bubble to the surface that you can help tackle and put your name on. Maybe it’s offering a new tool or technology to help improve a process, identifying an area that needs more resources in order to improved, or putting a stop to something that isn’t producing the desired results and is wasting time.

Socialize Outside Of Work Talk

Getting comfortable with my co-workers outside of work talk is so important to me. As an introvert, I think it really helps me connect and get comfortable with the people I interact with day in and day out. Maybe it’s scheduling a couple of team lunches or happy hours during those first 30 days to get to know you co-workers on a more social level.

Finding opportunities inside and outside of the industry to network and gain mentorship opportunities is another important piece of the puzzle, which is just one of the reasons why the OWA is such a great resource. If you’ve just joined the Optical Industry and are thinking about joining the OWA, I highly recommend it!

Written by: Janelle Pauli

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