Are you anxious about joining your new office and making a favorable 'professional' impression? Don't worry, as undertaking strategic behavior will help you to fit in easily as well as earn the reputation of being an indispensable asset to your new organization. Here are some common mistakes that new employees make.
A serious mistake that new employees commit is not dressing appropriately. Don’t wear loud or revealing outfits to work. Follow a professional dress code, and wear clean and ironed clothes to work every day.
Going to a new workplace is equally challenging and scary. On one hand, you are excited about joining a new company while on the other, you may worry about not making a single mistake that will work against you.
A new employee is under close scrutiny, and any mistake on his part, especially during the probation period, can even cost him his job. Therefore, it is important that you are cautious about your performance, behavior, appearance, etc., as it will impact the way your new boss or colleagues perceive you.
However, implementing the right strategic actions will not only secure your job but also make you indispensable for the organization. Hence, you should be completely aware about the common mistakes new employees make and resolutely avoid them.
Asking Too Many or Too Less Questions
Many people will suggest that you ask too many questions at your new workplace, in order to show that you are keen to know about the organization and your work.
However, by asking too many questions, you run the risk of coming across as person who does not do his own research and is not self-reliant. On the other hand, asking few or no questions will portray you as a disinterested person. All you have to do it ask the right and relevant questions at your new workplace.
Not Being Proactive
Many new employees do not contribute to the organization beyond the ambit of their job descriptions. This is a grave mistake. You must always add value to your work by giving suggestions, improving processes, estimating and completing work before time, etc.
Never say ‘this is not my job’ and decline work. You can also inquire with your colleagues, if you can be part of a particular project apart from the ones you are handling. This will portray you as a proactive self-starter and also help you to bond with your colleagues in a better way.
Sharing Personal Information
Do you really think the colleagues you met just a few days ago are interested in knowing about how you broke up with your girlfriend or how you suffer from gases after eating at the canteen?
Sharing too much personal information with your new colleagues may make them misjudge you.
Also, they will take unnecessary liberties at spreading gossip about you. Hence, it is of utmost importance that your behavior should not cross the line of professionalism.
Expecting Your Boss to Guide You
In the initial days, your boss will definitely guide you about the work and processes. He may also allot the responsibility to induct you in the proceedings of the department to one of your colleagues.
However, don’t expect that your boss or colleague will spoonfeed you after a certain duration. If you keep on depending on them, it will look as if you are incapable of learning or doing things on your own. You will be expected to work by yourself and apply your own management and decision-making skills.
Adding Your Colleagues to Social Networking Websites
A few days is too soon to add your new colleagues to your social networking websites, unless you really want them to see your spring break and bachelor party photos.
Don’t be too hasty in adding people. They may form opinions about you too soon by getting a peek-a-boo into your personal life. Let some time go by and get to know them better before adding them to your social networking websites.
Talking About Your Earlier Organization
Now, this is one mistake that most of us may have committed already. When at your new office, never say good or bad things about your earlier office. If you keep looking down on your previous employers or criticize them openly, you may lose the trust of the colleagues in your current company.
Also, if you keep on comparing how ‘good’ things were in your previous organization, it may not go down well with your new colleagues. Hence, it is advisable to broach the topic of your previous employers only when someone asks you about them. Also, refrain from saying bad things about the previous organization completely.
Thinking That You Know Better
New employees who have considerable experience in their earlier jobs often commit the mistake of thinking that they know better than anyone else.
However, you must remember that your colleagues are well-versed with the procedure and working of this particular organization and may know far better than what you do.
Also, if you keep showing off, you may come across as an egocentric person. Hence, always exhibit that you are keen on learning and growing in the organization. Refrain from throwing your weight around.
Not Socializing and Making Friends
You should interact with everyone in your office and try to get to know them better. This will help you to ‘fit in’ within your team or office. If you do not communicate with others, you may be seen as a rude, ignorant, and an uncompetitive person.
If you socialize and make friends, it will help you to get to know about the organization in a better way. Also, it is always beneficial to have friends who can help you out when the need arises.
Working for Allotted Hours Only
So you work from 9 to 5 on all weekdays. Well, if you are new at an organization, you are expected to put in a little extra effort. You must stay back for sometime every day in order to show that you are very much interested in your work.
This means that you will also have to work on some weekends, either from your home or at your workplace. Also, coming too late or leaving early makes you seem like a disinterested and frivolous employee.
Not Learning the Work Culture
Every organization has its distinct work culture. When you are new to a company, you must communicate with your colleagues, observe to understand, and imbibe its culture.
For example, if your new company follows the directives laid in its policies and procedures thoroughly, you will have to abide by them as well. If you try to be ‘different’ or do not care about the work culture, you may get isolated and reprimanded for it. It will also create a very bad impression on your boss, and that may decide your job confirmation.
Not Having Clear Expectations
Before starting your very first assignment, you must make it a point to understand the vision, mission, and goals of your new organization.
Not only this, but you should also understand how your work is going to affect the larger scheme of things in the departmental goals. Have a result-oriented approach and inquire with your boss or colleagues about the end result expected from the endeavor you are undertaking. This will help you to avoid rework and deliver work in a better way.
Not Having a Plan in Place
Many people join a new organization but they do have a foolproof plan to sustain there for a long time. You must have a plan in place when you join a new organization. You must set personal goals and have a strategy in place to accomplish them.
For example, you may plan to work on at least one major project in the first three months and provide tangible results. After deciding this, you will have to take concrete strategic steps towards attaining this goal. Similarly, you should have short- and long-term goals, which will enable you to work in the right direction.
Improper Behavior With Colleagues and Staff
Have cordial relations with all your colleagues; you may never know who will help you to get things done. Be nice to your cleaning staff, maintenance crew, support staff, etc., as they will be of great help to you.
Not Adapting to the New Ways of Working
If you are new to an organization, don’t be rigid in adapting to its policies, processes, and ways of working. You will have to be flexible and open to learning new things and adapting them.
Follow the protocols and hierarchies judiciously. Only then, you will be able to work faster and deliver accurate results. Many new employees do not take efforts in adapting to the new ways or working style, and this does not create a favorable impression on their superiors.
Over Decorating Your Office Space
Do you really need to put the photo of your favorite actress on your office desk? While it may be giving you motivation to work, others may not like it. Always keep your office accessories tasteful and neat.
Never overstock your desk with all kinds of ‘unwanted’ stuff. It will give a very unprofessional and cluttered look to your desk. More over, it will also ask for extra cleaning work. This may not project you favorably.
Not Watching Your Manners
Many employees, especially those who are working for the first time, commit the mistake of forgetting their manners. Whether it is greeting your colleagues, talking slowly on your mobile, following the proper email etiquette, etc., new employees often forget them.
This will not create the right impression on others. Hence, it is extremely crucial that you are on your ‘best behavior’ mode all the time.
Being Too Aggressive
While it is recommended that you participate in healthy competition at your work, indulging in cutthroat aggressive competition is a big no-no, at least for the first few months.
It is very difficult for a new person to gain acceptance in the team; moreover, if you will act hostile, it will result in unnecessary animosity. Hence, avoid being overaggressive and competitive.
In their quest to impress their new employers, a few resort to unethical tactics, like stealing credit for others’ work, making someone else work on a project and showing it as theirs, etc.
As the employers eventually come to know about this cheating, they do not take it lightly. Stealing someone else’s credit when you are still new in an organization portrays you to be a conniving and scheming individual. Give due credit to others and perform better to prove your mettle.
Being a new employee, the initial steps you take will help you build trust at work. Apart from this, when you are new in a company, you should not make the mistake of waiting for the boss to praise you.
However, do ask for feedback and tips for improvement from time to time. Also, don’t forget to maintain cordial relations with your boss; give him importance and seek his advice whenever required.
Don’t give unsolicited suggestions and try to prove other people wrong as they will not like it. No matter what, always maintain a professional approach. Now that you know about the common mistakes that new employees make after joining, avoid falling in the trap of committing them knowingly or unknowingly.