How to prepare for a new job and do your best

January is one of the busiest months in hiring due to fact that people are more candid to make such hard decision as leaving their current job. No matter if you are changing a job, moving to a new role inside your organization or restructuring current duties with your boss, you should take your time and think about what does it mean and how to manage it best.

I recently changed a job, a role and a place to live which means that I introduced three huge changes at once. It could be overwhelming. To make it easier, I put a lot of pressure to clearly define my own plan of onboarding to the new role. Here are three most important lessons learned.

Don’t think that doing the same as before will be enough.

Even if previously it worked when you changed your former job, it might not work in your next position. You should leave your ego and biases behind as much as possible and start with a blank page, strategically thinking about what is expected of you and how you can achieve it.

Track what you spend your time on and what progress you make.

You should constantly evaluate if you are spending enough time and doing significant progress in the key areas that are expected from you. It is very probable that you will unconsciously move to duties or areas that are most comfortable for you but might not be important from the perspective of the new role. Good engineers moving to manager position can spend too much time on engineering neglecting management. Good managers moving to engineers might try to spend too much time tech leading and neglecting individual contributions. Thanks to constant evaluation of your results without any bias, you can clearly catch if you are going off track and should react.

Push yourself out of your team, direct reports, and your direct manager.

If you are moving to the new company it is even more important. It is certain that even if you don’t put pressure on it, you will eventually know quite well your team and your manager. On the other hand, there is a huge chance that you won’t ever build relationships with anyone outside of your core department organically. That’s why it’s important to push and network with people outside of your team and your department even if it might feel cumbersome. Without these relationships, you won’t get a good context for the organization and your role. These conversations will help you know what the organization expects from your department and maybe even directly from you.

Changing the job might feel overwhelming or like a piece of cake. It depends on your experiences and how many times you actually changed your job already. However, I would make sure that you don’t go too easy on it and take your time trying to prepare for it. And most of all, leave your ego and bias and make sure you are trying to do your best