How to win in your first 90 days in a new job

Aug 29 , 2017

Be happy about your first 90 days on the jobThe competition was steep and the talent immense. Yet, through it all, it was you they chose to fill the highly sought after position. Congratulations!

Now, what’s next; what are you supposed to do now? Before you let panic set in, take a breath, relax and celebrate your win. And now think about how you can make a positive impression from day one all the way through the end of your initiation period, which typically lasts 90 days.

With a plan of action that involves achieving early wins, acclimating quickly and learning the behaviors or yourself and your new coworkers, you can be well on your way to making a favorable first impression.

Here are our recommendations to establishing your credibility in the first 90-days on the job.


Develop a plan for success

You get one chance to make a first impression so why not make that impression a great one? As the newest member of an organization, it is imperative to be as prepared as possible.

Start out by doing your research on the company. Who are they; what do they do? What do you know about the company culture? Are they an industry leader or an up and comer? What are some of the company’s potential strengths and weaknesses compared with their competition?

Doing your homework and coming as prepared as possible to your first day on the job will not only show you are a driven self-starter, but that you care and are completely invested in becoming a valuable member of the team.


Achieving early wins

Achieving early wins helps to set the pathway to successful employment. Find ways to do things early into your new position that can show people that you are not afraid to take risks and that want to be a contributing member of the organization as soon as possible.

Make key contacts in your new company by finding out who the overachievers are and align yourself with them. By aligning yourself with high achievers, you will learn great habits while being motivated to excel through friendly competition as you try to keep up with their pace.

Making a good first impression can be done in a number of small, but important ways. For example, learn people’s names. People love to hear their own names so the sooner you can learn the names of your coworkers, and use their names regularly, the quicker you will be accepted into the organization as “one of the gang.”


The lost art of listening

Another simple way to earn trust quickly is to engage people in conversation and actually listen to what they have to say. Have informal one-on-one meetings with coworkers to learn about who they are, what they do and how they contribute to the company. These interviews will also speed up your knowledge of the company, give you a real feel for the culture and probably expose any issues within the company. Certainly not meant to be a gossip session, use these interviews to build trust with coworkers of all levels. It shows you care about the company and the people that work there.


Using DISC to your advantage

Anytime you are beginning a new relationship of any kind, whether it’s work related or personal, taking an informative assessment such as DISC can reveal some very valuable insights. DISC is a science that deals with a person’s behaviors and can be a great indicator of how a person may act in a given situation.

Though it’s not foolproof, it’s a great predictor and especially tends to reveal how people will react under pressure. Learning first about yourself, DISC can show you not only your strengths but can point out situations where work friction could arise so you can be aware of it and proactively work to avoid it.

Once you understand yourself and the science behind DISC, you can apply these same principles when working with your coworkers and any customers you may come in contact with. Understanding the various DISC behaviors is fairly easy, and being able to spot the various behavioral patterns in people can be a huge advantage in communicating with people.

You will quickly be able to identify the “D” who is fast-paced, always on the go and likes to only hear the cliff notes version of the story. Conversely, the “I” in the workplace will be the gregarious person that loves to chat and always has a story to share. The “S” is personable, but is defined by an even-keeled approach that is not too fast and not too slow. They like routine and are not necessarily interested in immediate change. The folks with the “C” profiles in the office will help keep the “D” workers in place by thinking things through, taking the time to do the calculations to make sure the “D’s” newly hatched idea will actually work.  

Once you understand DISC and the behavior patterns associated with it, you will have a huge advantage in the workplace to know exactly how to interact with all your workers, regardless if you have matching DISC profiles or not. You will find that by applying these principles you be much more successful, achieve wins early and often and make a solid impression that will last.

Click here to learn more about DISC and how this science can help you win in your first 90 days in a new career.

About the Author

Dave Clark