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Are you facing change on the work front? 6 tips for adjusting to a new environment post COVID-19

Written by Staff Writer

November 30, 2020

By Chantelle Smith, Recruitment Specialist

Starting a new job in a new business environment does not always have to be the most terrifying thing you have ever done. There are things you – companies and new hires – can do to help make the transition a smooth one, offering a pleasant experience with far less stress than you would anticipate.

We all know that change is a scary thing and it can create a lot of anxiety around the uncertainty that it brings. When you are starting a new job in an entirely new environment that is foreign to you, stress and anxiety levels will naturally soar. Even for the most experienced professionals out there, this sort of change is extremely daunting.

Being able to adjust properly and to a new environment is going to take time and a lot of patience too. It is important to remember this and to not let the transition overwhelm you to the point where it will affect your performance.

  1. You need to acknowledge that change is going to happen. The more you anticipate change and the various challenges you will face as a new member of the team, the less likely you are to be caught off guard and the smoother the process of adaptation and integration will be. No new job is going to be exactly as you expect it to be and neither is a new boss or environment. You are going to have to be flexible, have an open mind and take on new challenges. It also means you need to embrace new relationships with your colleagues and that means you have got to be approachable and have a positive attitude towards it.
  2. Make an effort to get to know those around you. This includes not only your new colleagues, but your manager. If this means you set up some one-on-one time with them in order to understand how they want things done and what the expectations are – outside of the job description you have – it’ll make things a lot easier in terms of understanding where they stand and what they expect from you. Observe your manager in their interactions with the team, other managers, or supervisors and even with your clients. It’ll give you some insight as to their communication styles and their leadership styles and give you the chance to understand them better. Talk about the “other stuff” besides work with your team and your boss – “it creates the opportunity to connect on other common ground besides the roles you have in the office.
  3. Establish new relationships with your colleagues quickly. Try not to be that shy, awkward, quiet person who takes ages to warm up to new colleagues and who others do not know how to approach. Let’s face it, sometimes a new person is seen as an ‘outsider’ so it’s up to you to make sure you don’t stay that way. Take the time to meet the people you are working with and take note of remembering their names and get an understanding of their roles and how it all fits together with your role. Talk to them, show interest in what they do and who they are – remember, you’re going to spend a lot of time with them, be it in the office, in virtual meetings in the ‘new normal’ as we know it and you’re going to have to make sure you all get along.
  4. Ask a lot of questions, especially if you are unsure of anything related to the company or your role, no matter how silly you may feel the question is, rather ask than be unsure and continue working without knowing exactly what is expected or how something should be done – it’s easier to ask upfront than to correct an error a long way down the line.
  5. Keep a positive attitude and embrace the change you are faced with. Find someone as a mentor in your new team and gain their insight about their experiences in the company and what you can expect and keep building relationships.

Never be afraid to share the knowledge you have gained in your career as well – you may find that you enlighten the new team with a new way of doing something, adding to your credibility and your transition. Information sharing is vital when it comes to a team’s success, do not be afraid to do so, and offer help where you can. People appreciate it more than you know.

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Addressing internal and external changes through structural adjustments and actionable values can enhance your organisation’s culture. This initiative could foster a workplace environment where women feel more empowered to voice their perspectives and are motivated to take on additional responsibilities to advance their careers.