Who wouldn’t want to be awesome in a new job? Arriving at a new employer and having people tell you what a wonderful contribution you’re making, is the ultimate self-confidence and self-esteem booster. When your self-confidence is high, you’re more likely to bring optimism and energy to what you are doing and feel brave about speaking up about the things that need to change.
Being awesome in a new job – in fact, being awesome at anything, takes patience, hard-work and lots of collaboration. Most people don’t just land in a role prepared and ready to be impressive. Having a positive impact depends on many variables, not least what you consider success to look like, alongside what your colleagues and employer think.
How to be awesome in a new job
While there is no one formula for outstanding success, there are things you can do to give yourself the best possible chance of it.
1. Get prepared to actively listen to other people – no matter what you know, or how expert you think you are, being awesome in a new job is all about getting perspective on what’s going on around you. You can’t possibly do that unless you are prepared to spend a great deal of time actively listening.
2. Try and define what success looks like for you – for example, is about how well you are liked, how quickly you complete your workload, or how much you are paid? Then think about what success might look if you were standing in your colleague’s shoes – do they want an expert, someone with different knowledge, a safe pair of hands, a hard worker, or someone to talk to? Finally, what does your employer define as success – is it hitting the sales figures, growing market share, or delivering that new piece of technology? Don’t assume all the answers will be the same! If you want to be awesome in your new job you need to work out how to close the gaps between different stakeholder needs.
3. When you’re in a new job the first thing you might think about doing is showing your colleagues how well you can get on with the job and get tasks done. This isn’t the same as building up an appreciation of what’s important, rather than what’s urgent. Before you commit to taking on extra work to impress, think about the quality of your contribution and why it matters.
4. You’re unlikely to impress in a new job if your only concerned for your own success. Spend time finding out how you can make other people successful. Sustained long-term success is about people being awesome together. It doesn’t mean you can’t shine with your particular qualities and skills – it means you aren’t doing it to the detriment of others.
5. Work on being authentic. People might think that being impressive is all about how loudly you speak and how much you are involved in things. This urgency to be the centre of attention won’t necessarily make you awesome – in fact it might work against you, with others seeing you as someone who needs to hog the limelight or have the last say. Bring the real you into the workplace. If you are a little on the introverted side and are shy when building new relationships, don’t see this as a negative. Treasure your strengths and let others work out the positives of the real you.
6. Finally, be patient. Very often employers are just looking for people with the right character, who will fit into the team and organisation and grow along with whatever agenda needs attending to.
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