Your first day in a new role is always nerve wrecking but starting a new position during a global pandemic, well that’s something else.
I joined Four Recruitment just over five weeks ago now. I found myself in an extremely fortunate position in that my new team had gone back to work, which allowed me to experience the normality of sitting at a desk and meeting my colleagues face to face, albeit at a distance.
My first day was as expected, very different to any first day I’ve had in the past. I was given a guided tour of the office which followed the newly introduced one way system, complete with regular sanitiser stops on the way; it was clear everyone was new to this and adapting. Having been hired via zoom, this was my first time in the office, so it was both a strange and exciting day, one I won’t forget!
Now five weeks down the line, I have very much settled into my new position and I would certainly class myself to be one of the lucky few; having been offered a new role during the pandemic. Much like myself, many of the candidates we work with have been faced with similar challenges while starting their new positions and from the feedback we have received, it is clear that that starting a new job remotely can be a very lonely experience.
I have put together my top tips to help anyone who is starting a new role post Covid, whether that be working from home or in an office:
1. Be prepared: Now that we are starting to return to the office, the one advantage we have is that we are aware that businesses have changed the way they operate. Some offering options to work from home or other flexible working opportunities, while others are trying their best to return to the office with an in house team.
If you’re working in the office, go in on your first day with a positive mind-set, being prepared for the potential social distancing measures that have been put in place, although it may feel alien to you being prepared should avoid it disrupting your work day too much.
If you are starting your new position from home, get organised the day before to set up your systems and workspace appropriately. Check everything is running smoothly to avoid any surprises that could add stress to your first day. Fail to prepare then prepared to fail and all that.
2. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself
Learning a new role is tough enough without the added pressure of starting during a pandemic. Understandably it’s hard not to feel overwhelmed by being grateful for this new position in such uncertain times, but putting extra pressure on yourself won’t help anyone. Take it day by day while adapting to your new environment, and don’t forget to ask for help if you need it!
3. Take the time to get to know your colleagues – Whether it be at a distance in the break room, over an email or LinkedIn it’s important to take the time to try and get to know your peers. If working remotely you could ask if anyone’s free for a coffee over zoom, this will give you chance to ask any questions about the company you may not feel comfortable asking your line manager.
4. Ask questions – I firmly stand by the statement that there is no such thing as a stupid question. In a new role things will inevitably come up that you need to know, and when working from home you need to be asking questions quickly and often to avoid becoming snowed under.
Don’t be discouraged if people aren’t immediately available to help, keep asking questions it ensures that you are demonstrating your engagement and eagerness to learn. Plus, asking questions is a great reason to start speaking to people and building relationships with your colleagues.
5. Embrace the change: Life is changing, everything around us is, and we need to move with it or we risk being left behind. Homeworking is now the norm for many companies and the business landscape has changed significantly - but go with it! Adapt to these changes and try new methods of working, you never know, you could find something that positively affects your workday and gives you the work life balance you’ve been looking for!
6. Training – it very much depends on the role you have, but, sign up to training courses on line to assist you in your own personal development. This is so crucial in developing your career and assisting you in setting in and embracing your new position.
Written by Shannon Dixon, Marketing Executive