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The first 100 days, 8 ways to impress at your new job

Find quick wins to impress and get people recognizing you as a superstar.

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Find quick wins to impress and get people recognizing you as a superstar.

Many companies hold a probation period of 3 months or 90 days, then you wait for at least 2 weeks to get your confirmation letter. Instead of it being afraid and uncomfortable while you wait for ‘will they or won’t they?’ You can get started in doing some work and in making a contribution and with that a good impression that will go a long way in making them want to keep you.

1. The fundamentals

Understand what business you are in; understand the business model and the revenue streams. Figure out what your role does to propel the business forward. This way you will have your eye on the big picture, as well as a view of the specifics of how your role impacts the business. With this information you can position yourself where the money is or re-calibrate your functions, projects and interests according to what direction the business is moving. That’s how you will always be relevant.

2. Survey the new landscape

Get to know the people, have formal introductions, have a session with them, and learn about what they do for the business. This can be done formally during orientation. Try to learn their personal side as well. Get to learn if they have kids, pets etc Find out what you have in common with them. Start to build a rapport so when it is time to work you know how to work with them.

3.Figure out who is really in charge.

You need to identify who you need to work with to get your projects going. This is beyond titles and positions, it is about who shapes the business and influences decision making.

4. Identify low lying fruit.

Find quick wins to impress and get people recognizing you as a superstar. This will make it easier to get people on board your projects when the time comes, as they would want some of the shine of being with the superstar. Remember to share the limelight though, and mention the people who were instrumental in making things come to life, so that they see they will always be credited.

5. Identify short term, mid-term and longer term goals

What would you like to achieve at this job? What campaigns do you want to run for your own portfolio, what networks do you want to build? Think about it; write it down and when things become hard, you will have this to keep you going. Keep focused on this and align your goals with the business goals, so that everyone wins.

6. What new skills do you want to gain?

What are your knowledge or skills gaps that you would like to fill? Will you go for evening class, or learn online after work, or run a DVD on the radio on your way home after work. What are your other life goals e.g. fitness goals, spiritual goals etc. This way you can join the gym in the building after work, or go for early morning Mass each day. This way you can have the satisfaction of having a balanced life, and getting success in all other aspects of your life.

7. Check in from time to time.

Review your job description, asses what you are doing well and where you need to improve. Reflect with your supervisor informally if you can, so they can share their impressions of you; have time to improve before the formal review. Use your instincts to decide about this. This is because in one case this served me very well and in another it was used as ammunition against me during the formal review.

8. Communicate clearly, concisely and assertively.

Let there be respect. Be clear on your worth and value and what you bring to the table. Use it, show it and make a contribution. Don’t hesitate to get your hands dirty or to volunteer for unpopular tasks, and remember to prioritize your primary agenda, which is what brought you to that job.

Lina Dyhr is a Media, Marketing Communications and Business Strategy professional with over 10 years experience. She loves travel and adventure despite being challenged in reading maps, is passionate about entrepreneurship and is usually at the right place at the right time for opportunity. Her recent engagements include Fairtrade Africa Communications Manager for 33 countries in Africa and 3 in the Middle East and Marketing Director for Easy Taxi, a taxi hailing app in 420 cities. Lina will be running a free webinar “Before you quit your job” so feel free to apply for an exclusive spot to attend here, and email in your questions so she can research good quality answers for you.

Written by

Kelvin Mokaya

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