Over the last 7 years, God has taken our family on an adventure. That adventure included 4 job changes, and a total of 6 moves from apartments and houses. As God led through all that change, we made several mistakes. In the ups and downs, I’ve learned a few things about starting a new job. Here are three things to do in your first 6 weeks that will help you win in the long run.
1. Listen & Learn
The truth rarely comes out in interviews. Interviews are everyone best impressions. So when you begin something new, it’s important that you listen to find out the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. This will help you create a vision and plan for your role. Be careful not to mistake gossip for the truth about the organization.
2. Establish Relationships
Get face-to-face time with anyone and everyone. As a “newbie,” people probably recognize your face but that doesn’t mean they know you or much less trust you. Have coffee or lunch with as many volunteers, parents, staff members, etc. as possible. Share about yourself, but spend more time listening to their stories and their hearts. Invest time in them so that they will invest in you as a leader.
3. Serve, Serve, Serve
One of the worst things to do when starting a new job is to sit idle. There is always hype about a new hire, so they’re expecting to see a lot of action. This is what tempts many newcomers to starting blowing things up and making tons of change in their first month. Not a good idea.
Making major change immediately only alienates you from the people you’re leading. It’s like telling them that everything they’ve been doing is trash and you’re the garbage man. Even if that is true, it’s not the best way to start.
Instead, find ways to help with what is currently happening. Roll up your sleeves and start serving. First, serving helps you gain respect of those you’re leading. Second, serving on the frontline gives you a much better perspective on what needs to change. In your first 6 weeks, Serve, Serve, Serve!