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How To Adjust To a New Work Environment

Today’s post is written by Harrison Kratz, the Community Manager for MBA@UNC, a top online MBA program from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He sticks to his entrepreneurial roots as the founder of the global social good campaign, Tweet Drive

Starting a new job can be the beginning of an exciting chapter in your professional career — unfortunately, it can also mark the start of a stressful time in your personal life as you leave familiar people and comfortable routines behind and strike out in unfamiliar territory.

Here are some tips that will help you make the most of your new work environment.

Knowledge is king

Learn all you can about your new employer before your first day on the job. The more you know, the more confident you’ll feel. After you’ve started working, arrive early and stay a little later each day so that you have more time to become familiar with your new workplace. Keep your eyes and ears open at work so you can learn as much as possible about company history and day-to-day operations.

[Related Post: What Should I Wear ~ New Job Style]

Be open and friendly with new co-workers

Whether you stay at your new job for a few months or several years, cultivating good feelings in the office is always worth the effort. Off the job, introduce yourself to your new neighbors. Let people know that you’re new in town and ask for advice about the area.

Stay neutral

Many people see a new co-worker as a new ally in their long-running disputes with others. Until you learn the lay of the land, don’t take sides or allowed yourself to be pulled into gossip.

Don’t say no when new co-workers ask you to socialize

Do remember to conduct yourself in a professional manner. Enjoy yourself, but remember that people don’t know you yet and will be forming lasting impressions of you based on your actions in the early days of your new job.

Don’t be shy about asking questions.

Trying to figure everything out on your own will create feelings of isolation; it can also be counter-productive and a waste of time. Get to know your co-workers by asking questions about work and about the local community.

Stay in touch with old friends and co-workers

But don’t rely on them too much. The best way to feel comfortable in your new work environment is to focus on forging new professional and personal relationships. Relying too heavily on folks from your past job may prevent you from making the relationships necessary to succeed in your new one.

Concentrate on the positive aspects of your new environment

Think of the changes in your life as part of a great adventure. Explore local landmarks, sample the restaurants in the neighborhood and learn more about activities that are specific to your new community. Get involved in some local events that interest you and you’ll soon be feeling like a local!
Big life changes are never easy and making a few mistakes comes with the territory. Relax, take things one day at a time and give yourself time to adjust. Before too long your new environment might just begin to feel a lot like home. 

How do you adjust to a new work environment?

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