How to Successfully Navigate Your First Weeks in a New Remote or Hybrid Job
If you've recently accepted a new fully-remote or hybrid job offer, you may be feeling underprepared to work from home comfortably and efficiently. Here are some tips to effectively prepare and navigate your first few weeks.
Clarify Onboarding Procedures
Leading up to your first day, you'll probably receive information regarding the initial onboarding process, such as new-hire paperwork, orientation tasks, and where and when to report to for your onboarding virtual meetings. If you haven't yet heard anything or are unsure about what is expected from you on the first day, inquire as soon as possible regarding your new company's procedures.
Get a Head Start on Acclimating
Businesses want their employees to be successful, regardless of where their work is done. Ask which technological resources are offered to employees to facilitate virtual meetings or help with task management and organization, and get acquainted with these tools ahead of your first day. Raise any issues you're having with access or credentials provided to clear up problems in advance and ensure a smooth first day.
Also, take time to do some light reading and familiarize yourself with the company, your department, job expectations, and remote work policies. Write down any questions you have that you would like to further explore during the onboarding. These little things go a long way towards feeling prepared.
Invest in your Workspace
Set yourself up for success by creating a comfortable and productive space. First, reflect on what technology or comforts you'll need to do your job well aside from the obvious strong WIFI or cable connection. And don't forget to consider physical ergonomics; You'll be sitting (or standing) in one spot for hours, so invest in comfortable furniture like a padded chair, laptop stand, keyboard wrist-rest, or maybe a standup desk. Lastly, surround your workspace with the things you love most, like plants or photos, for an extra boost of happiness throughout the day 😊.
Ask ALL the Questions
There are many things that will be new to you when you start a fresh job, and that's expected! So as you progress through your first few days and weeks, don't be afraid to ask questions and be proactive with setting up meetings and starting conversations on these topics. Since you won't be in the same room or building as your team, it's important to initially over-communicate to ensure that you and your colleagues are in tandem.
To avoid sending multiple emails with questions daily, try compiling a list on the side of your least pressing questions to discuss with your manager on a daily or weekly basis, or when more urgent questions arise, using your team's communication tool, shoot a quick message to the group chat or a teammates 1 on 1 chat.
Communication is Key
Speaking of communication tools, it's vital that you figure out right from the get-go how to best keep in contact with your teammates and manager. Consistent workplace communication has many benefits including improvements in morale and productivity. Everybody's different, so while you're putting names and faces together and building new connections, ask their preferred method of communication like whether they'd prefer a message on the group chat, 1 on 1, or an email and what times they're most likely to be free to sync up and discuss things. This will establish an easy communication flow.
Most Importantly, Take a Deep Breath and Be Patient
If there's anything you can be assured about going into a new job, it's that you are going to be nervous, and that's ok! Research shows it takes between three to six months to fully adjust to a new role. So instead of getting nervous or frustrated over the newbie mistakes you're sure to make, and how much you don't yet know about the job and your responsibilities, use your onboarding period to learn the ropes and cement a flourishing collaborative working environment with your colleagues, as this will be key to your individual success and team success moving forward.
So take a deep breath, work hard, and at the same time be patient. You are going to do just fine!