Join performance psychologist Gemma Leigh Roberts to understand how critical a 90-day strategy is at the start of your career transition, focusing on six key factors that can help you get ahead quickly.
- The fact is, the first 90 days in your role are some of the most critical within your career. Why are the first 90 days so important? This is when your manager and colleagues will build a first impression of you, and, as we know, first impressions count and can be really hard to change. 90 days is a significant amount of time to start making an impact and business targets are often measured in this timeframe. Make no mistake, your first 90 days in a role are likely to be busy and you'll have a lot to learn.
As your confidence and competence in your role develop, you may feel the pressure subside, but it's important to be prepared for the physical and mental efforts your first three months in a new position will require. The key is to become as competent, confident, and effective in your role as quickly as possible, building strong relationships whilst creating a positive impression with your manager and colleagues. There are some key areas to focus on that will help you to successfully navigate those first 90 days.
Focusing on these areas will help you to get ahead quickly and effectively. Accelerate your learning. Create a plan to help you prepare for your transition and build a strategy that will help you to continue progressing. The first 90 days should be focused on gathering information about the company and culture and what's expected of you in your role. Get some early wins. Build credibility by making an impact as quickly as you can.
If you can see a way to tweak a process or manage part of your role more effectively, suggest it to your manager. Don't feel the pressure to make big changes. Just keep searching for small, quick wins. Build key relationships early. Ask your manager who is it critical you get to know and meet with these people as soon as you can. This includes colleagues at all levels in the organization, people who are key influences, or those that will play a part in you achieving your targets.
Also, be proactive in building a relationship with your boss. This is as much your responsibility as it is theirs. Build trust. Follow up with people when you say you will, honor your commitments. Even if no one chases you, or it seems that what you've promised has fallen off the radar, make sure you stick to your commitment and still deliver. Look for a mentor. This could be your manager or someone else in the organization.
The role of a mentor is to help you navigate specific territory, offering advice, guidance, and their insight. Ask for feedback regularly. It's only with feedback that you can develop your professional image. How can you know how you come across to others if you don't ask them? Seek feedback from as many people as possible, not just your manager. No matter what feedback you receive, be gracious and thankful.
Feedback is a gift, as it provides you with an insight which you can use to develop. Create a support network. This could be in your professional or personal life, or even a career club. It's important to have people you share your career journey with, people who can offer guidance, support, and insight. This network will help you to keep moving forward even in challenging times. Focusing on your first 90 days will help you to build a strong professional image in those critical first months.
It will start you effectively on your career journey and it will help you to make an impact early on, building a successful career in the short and long term. So, which of these areas can you focus on to help you make an impact in your first 90 days? Take some time to make a plan detailing how you're going to implement these actions.
- Transitioning from the campus to the office
- Differences in the working world
- Developing a transition success mindset
- Adapting to a new environment
- Avoiding cultural mistakes
- The first 90 days
- Building a strategy