Dear First Gen,
Your first 30 days have passed and the next milestone will be 60 days at your new job. The excitement of being the new person in the office has worn off and you are probably being looked at more closely and being expected to produce “better results” than 30 days ago.
I hope you are still enthusiastic about your position and the work you are doing. My last post offered three suggestions on how to make the most out of your first 30 days. You should continue to use these strategies as you move into the next 30.
Things may start to move pretty fast. In my new role, I was asked to take the lead fairly early on. Only 30 days had passed when I was told by my supervisor to attend a meeting on my own and to take the lead in a drafting assignment. Even if I wasn’t sure I was ready, my response was immediately, “Sure. I’ll do it.”
I was fortunate that it was just one meeting that week, which gave me a chance to reflect on the meeting and how best to execute on my assignment. When I took a crack at drafting a document, it was returned to me with several errors noted—and those errors were in places where I thought that I knew the concept or task well.
The two lessons I learned from this experience?
Accept the Leadership Role. If you’re asked to take on a leadership role early on, it’s probably because you have been producing good work so far, and your supervisor believes in your capability to handle more responsibility. You may be nervous and concerned about your lack of preparation or knowledge, but you should not shy away from the opportunity. After all, if you turn this chance down, they may not ask you again. Take your chance to show—and develop—your skills. However, if you do not feel prepared or are certain you cannot complete the project as assigned, don't hesitate to ask for guidance, assistance, or to split the role with someone else. After my first leadership role, I thought about what worked, how I represented myself, and how I tackled the assignment. It gave me an opportunity to work on the clarity of my notes and think about what I would like to do the next time I am attending a meeting alone.
Learn from your Mistakes. The sooner you accept that you are new to the position and the format, structure, or procedures, the sooner you will learn the best way to tackle a task. It’s better to make and learn from mistakes early on so that you’re not spending too much time correcting your mistakes after you’re well-established in your new role. Mistakes are an opportunity to learn the best way to produce your best work. As your time increases in your job, your responsibilities will increase, and that’s not the time to make costly errors. You’ll need to be diligent about your time management once you have more responsibility, so let's get those mistakes out of the way early on, so you can move on to bigger and better things!
These two lessons are key to moving forward in your position. If you are seeking to rise, I think this would help you to climb the ladder and shine your brightest in this new position that you’ve worked so hard to attain.
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