Starting a new job can be exciting, but also stressful. Self-doubt can kick in or you may feel overwhelmed by all the people you're meeting and information you need to remember. Becoming acclimated to a new workplace takes some time and patience, but you also want to be present and set yourself up for success from the start if you can. And of course, starting a new job with a cancer diagnosis can add even more to stress and worry. A recent post from Idealist laid out three questions to ask on your first day to set you up for success at a new organization.
What are my objectives for my first week on the job?
You should not be expected to learn everything in 5 days. Give yourself grace and remind yourself that it takes time to learn new systems, who handles what, what the organization is looking for in your work, etc. But you also want to make sure you understand what is expected of you while you are learning the new job. Asking your supervisor what your objectives are for the first week (and the second week, and third, and so on) will show that you are communicating well and takes away any chance of misunderstanding or starting off on the wrong foot.
Can we schedule some time to talk about communication preferences and styles?
One of the fastest ways to succeed at a job is to have an impeccable communication style. Everyone has a different natural style of communication, but knowing what is expected from you in terms or project updates, how best to ask questions, etc is instrumental when starting a new job right. Effective communication in the workplace will eliminate misunderstandings or other pitfalls.
When is a good time for me to step away for lunch?
Self-care is essential, and that includes taking breaks throughout the day. But each workplace is different in how they may handle breaks. Does everyone take a break at the same time every day? Do you stagger breaks so someone is always available to answer the phone? Knowing the protocol for taking breaks will help you plan your own personal self-care throughout the day and set a positive precedent to continue throughout your employment.
For more resources on starting a new job after a cancer diagnosis:
- Write out a personal disclosure plan including Should You Tell, Whom to Tell, When to Tell, How to Tell and What to Tell
- Be prepared for comments from co-workers by perfecting The Swivel
- Set Professional Boundaries
- Back to Work Considerations
- Download or order a free Communicating Effectively Publication
- Register for one or both upcoming Communicating Effectively webinars on September 13 and October 4