Increase Your Value in Your First 90 Days: Tips for New Team Members
There are lots of articles, books, and blogs about onboarding to a new job. At Four15 Digital, we also provide a ‘checklist of items’ for your first 90 days. We, and most companies, have the goal of making your onboarding really clear and rather regimented. This process basically takes the emphasis off ‘being you’ and onto performing basic job functions.
To be clear, your goal at F15 and elsewhere should be, first and foremost, to complete that checklist! But don’t sell yourself short by buying into such a narrow view of things. You can have a huge impact right away beyond completing the list. The best employees will know this, and view their first 90 days as a chance to make their mark.
Here are some thoughts from me during your first 90 days.
Get Comfortable ASAP:
Changing jobs is a huge change in your life. It may take you a few weeks/month/years to fully get comfortable. But, as a founder, it’s a huge plus if you can expedite this process as much as possible. I want to get to know the real you because you’re likely pretty awesome! And I don’t want to waste time working with you in a way that won’t be effective for you. Let’s get to work ASAP.
We Don’t Expect You to Be Good at Your Job:
I expect that you will lack hard skills relative to most of the team members that have been here 6+ months. Don’t stress on this at all. We’re only observing how quickly you learn, not how much you know….focusing on closing the gap, no matter how large it is.
This is New to You, but Not Us:
We’re all really excited to get some fresh faces in! We want to know your story, your strengths, weaknesses and everything about you. Getting to know team members breaks up any monotony in our day to day. So, when we say ‘we’re excited to have you here’, we mean it! It’s a great opportunity to take center stage.
We’re All Just People Who’d Like Your Help:
If you can figure out what your team members need (founders, manager, peers and direct reports) quickly, you’ve found a great opportunity to become very important. You can make everyone’s day better in one way or another. If you figure out what folks need, you’ll be in a great spot! You should spend time in your first 90 days truly figuring out how you can help.
We want to hear from you! We’re not dough eyed, but there is always something we are hoping to learn from you. Did you just come from an agency? Great, what can we learn at F15 from that? Were you just working in a quick serve restaurant? Ok, what can we learn from that? Etc etc. We’re innovative, challenge the status quo (and each other) all the time, and more, but there’s still the desire to hear and learn different perspectives. We want to hear it!
When you’re being onboarded to a company, the expectation (rightfully so) is the company puts more into you than you give back to them. But don’t let that cripple your ability to become important. The quicker you can be yourself, and establish yourself, the quicker you’ll be indispensable. Since hard-skill expectations are often quite low when you’re new, it’s easy to exceed expectations overall through your soft skills and just becoming part of the team and culture.