How to Adapt to a New Career
By Alan Olsen
Have you recently changed careers? Or maybe you’re working in the same career,
but you’ve taken on a new role or additional responsibilities. Perhaps you’ve been
promoted or even demoted, or you’ve made a lateral move, doing the same job, but
with a different company. Any one of these situations could be stressful, which of
course could negatively affect your performance. Changing careers or jobs is often
done out of necessity and not by choice, so that can add even more stress and
pressure. If you’re going through this situation then you’re probably wondering
what you can do to stay on top of things and ensure a smooth transition.
The first thing you should do is take a deep breath and allow yourself some quiet
moments to evaluate everything that’s going on. It takes time to adjust to a new
career or job, so don’t be too hard on yourself or add any unnecessary pressure.
After all, allowing yourself to get overwhelmed will only make things harder.
Therefore, relax and take in as much as you can the best you can, but don’t place
your expectations too high; and don’t expect it to all come at once. Most employers
know there is an adjustment period.
Reach Out to Others
Another source of help when you’re trying to adjust is relying on others, especially
your new coworkers. Go out of your way to meet new people and ask a lot of
questions. You will be more comfortable in your new surroundings as you get to
know people, plus you might find valuable resources for help in your job as well,
from people who already know the company culture and are familiar with the inter-
office operations. However, be careful not to isolate yourself into any cliques. Your
best bet is to have as many allies as possible. After all you want everyone to be able
to trust you. Plus, you want to be able to ask for help when you need it.
Have Clear Expectations
Another great idea is to speak openly and honestly with your supervisor to ensure
that you understand exactly what the expectations are. By having a clear knowledge
and understanding of your responsibilities, duties and success markers, you will be
much better prepared to reach your goals and achieve your desired success. Ask
your boss to give specific expectations for the first month as well as the first six
months. That way, you’ll know exactly what you’re trying to accomplish. In addition,
it’s always a good idea to ask for honest feedback, as long as you’re prepared to
Leave Your Old Job Behind
When you start a new job or career, especially with a new company, you need to be
prepared to leave the past behind you. Avoid harkening back to your old job or how
your previous company did things. Instead, you need to focus on how your current
company operates. If you’re previous company did things better, don’t point that
out. Instead, offer suggestions without mentioning your old job. Changing jobs is
tough, but by implementing these tips it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.