Settling in to a new job

It’s been 3 months since I started my new job. 3 months yesterday, to be precise. I was aware of the impending milestone and thought about it last week, then promptly forgot about until I received an email from our HR manager yesterday telling me I’d passed my probation. Woo and hoo! I mean, I think I’ve been doing OK, but you never know.

I’d been in my previous job for 8 years and, although I’d worked under different managers and in different offices, I was settled there. Settled as in I knew my job pretty much inside out, felt comfortable with most of the people I worked with, was confident in my ability. But the advent of a new director changed the dynamic completely. I was already looking for a new job, admittedly half heartedly, when I got made redundant.

It’s the best thing that could have happened to me in that role.

I read this article in the Metro a while back, and emailed it to myself to remind me how far I’d come (and to laugh at if a bad day arose!) It’s easy to think on your first day that you’re never going to get it. Even if you know that you know your stuff, you can start to feel like the biggest doofus in a new environment.

The expert in anything was once a beginner

And the smallest things really matter! Numbers 2, 8 and 10 in the article. I left home so early it was pretty much still the night before! (OK, slight exaggeration). Lunch was especialy weird, as in my old job I used to come home for lunch. And as for the toilet, it honestly took me about 6 weeks to turn the right way when I came out of the bathroom and back to my office (I got confused with the direction to the kitchen).

What was that about being confident in my ability?!

Sometimes forced changes bring other changes too. Like, for me, this blog. I’d been thinking about starting one for years, never getting round to it. Once I realised I was potentially going to have a lot of time on my hands, I gave me the incentive to get cracking.

New jobs don’t always work out for people; especially when they’re in a forced situation like redundancy and need to get something new. I know I’ve been lucky. The change of organisation size (large to small) and change of culture (corporate to caring) has been a breath of fresh air. I now get to liaise with actual people and hear the difference our product makes, rather than other businesses who are just trying to cut costs their side.

But you know what? If I hadn’t been lucky, and the new job hadn’t worked out, that would have been OK too. Because once you’ve made the move – whether by choice or by force – you’ve done the hard bit. And you realise that being the newbie isn’t the end of the world.

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