Starting off Right with New Colleagues

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Beginning a new job at a new organization is an exciting time in your career. But it can also be intimidating to be the ‘new person.’ To help ease your transition, we’ve outlined a few tactics for the first week, month, and three months to help you develop strong and trusting relationships with your new colleagues.

Building these relationships early will give you a better sense of belonging and will help you in your work. Good relationships lead to trust, open communication and teamwork, which in turn contributes to the overall success of the organization.  

First Week on the Job 

During your first week, start building a good rapport with your new colleagues right away by doing the following:

  • Introduce yourself to other team members. 
  • Learn and remember your immediate teammates' names. 
  • Identify the roles various individuals hold in the organization. 
  • Find out how the larger department or unit is structured. 
  • Determine how team members prefer to communicate. 
  • Establish your go-to person (e.g. your direct manager or the person whom you’re to ask questions).

First Month on the Job 

Throughout your first month, earn your acceptance by colleagues by doing the following:

  • Observe and learn from others. 
  • Actively and attentively listen to others.
  • Demonstrate that you understand the unspoken rules. 
  • Try to earn respect or acceptance from established group members by demonstrating your competence and congeniality. 
  • Ask questions and try to learn as much as possible about the company and your colleagues.  

Three Months on the Job 

Once you hit the three-month mark at your new job, you will likely have started to develop relationships with your colleagues. At this point, you should understand the team dynamics and feel like you’re a part of it. Further develop these new relationships by doing the following:

  • Initiate a social interaction with one of your team members (e.g. lunch or coffee). 
  • Openly contribute ideas to the team in a diplomatic and polite way. 
  • Learn to be a little more self-sufficient. 
  • Offer your help on projects and assignments where you think you can contribute your expertise. 

Remember that you were hired because of your technical skills, experience and expertise. But you need to prove that you have effective soft skills to go along with those hard skills. Effectively demonstrating your ability to interact and communicate will support your success at your new job.

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