The Best People To Know When Starting a New Job
After spending time and energy getting the role, the last thing you want to do is sabotage your success by getting in with the wrong crowd.
Remember, though, you aren’t at work to make your new besties — you’re there to form quality relationships that will support you in achieving your career goals.
It’s really daunting meeting so many new people at once, but you only get one chance to make a first impression. Warming up these relationships from the start helps if you need to ask questions and seek advice later, also they’ll be more tolerant while you get up to speed.
If you’re bad at remembering names, try to repeat theirs within the first few seconds of conversation. It sounds a bit sleazy, but it’ll help cement the name in your memory (plus, it shows that you’re interested).
You’ll want to make the right connections as quickly as possible, while being pals with the CEO probably wouldn’t hurt; there are a few other well-known office archetypes that can really help you out. So, when you’re kicking off a new job, seek out these important officemates:
People who work the front desk often have a gatekeeper role, which means they hold a lot of power. They’re the eyes and ears of the company. They know who’s coming and going, how long they’ve been at the company and all sorts of other useful information. Make a connection here and you’ll know what’s going on under the radar.
Your Immediate Boss
If you work hard they’ll respect you…but if he or she also likes you you’ll be top of the list when there are any benefits going. This is a toughie, but you can start by making idle conversation on topics where you know you have common ground (“How was the surfing in Cornwall? I’m planning a trip there next year…”). Eventually, once you become more familiar, you can work your way up to lunch.
It’s not just the Top Jonnies who can have a significant influence on your career. The people who manage those executives’ calendars can also be very helpful connections; in addition, they often carry out high-level tasks or delegate projects, getting to know them could get you involved.
The IT Support pro
It is crucial to befriend is the person responsible for fixing computers, troubleshooting software and managing systems, this also includes whoever is in charge of telecommunications, whether it’s an IT position or is overseen by a director of communications.
Having an in with people in these departments can put you at the top of the to-do list when your device (and thus you) starts having a meltdown — not to mention helping you get an upgrade more quickly than you expected.
It’s also convenient to know someone a few cubes over, who can help when your computer won’t turn on, or you can’t figure out how to adjust your margins without destroying your formatting. With some quick handiwork from a techy colleague, you’ll be good to go.
The Nutty King
You know the feeling: its 3pm, you’re starting to get the “maybe that rice cake wasn’t enough for lunch” shakes (or you’ve just had that 20 minute, shouty, shitty, client interaction, and need stress-relieving indulgence)… but you’re 10p short for the vending machine.
This is precisely when it pays to know that guy in the marketing department who has squirreled away a drawer full of top grade confectionery, and is willing, for a few minutes banter, to share the stash. Remember to occasionally offer to replenish the Nutty Locker!
The Party Planner
You should always befriend the Entertainment Guru or Head of Fun, and quick. At least, you should if you want to be in the loop about co-worker get-togethers, informal events, and summer BBQs. Besides the obvious fact that this will help you make new pals, it’s a handy way of getting to know people in other departments (for further use).
The Mature Peer
Typically, this person is a little higher up, has been with the company quite a bit longer and, well, just generally knows more than you. They can help you with all the less serious quandaries, such as office protocols, dress codes, and they always bring the right stuff to company picnics. (Let’s not say the Mature Peer is never slightly obnoxious.)
Know The Cleaner
What is the first name of the person who cleans the office?
This isn’t a joke question, in your career, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say “hello, Eddie”, yes… that’s his name
You will meet many people this week – clients, customers, colleagues, the checkout operator at Tesco’s, the ticket collector at the station, they are all significant. Be on the lookout for Eddies, quiet leaders and silent heroes. Remember each person that crosses our path is an opportunity for a touch point, even if it’s just a smile and a hello.
Quite frankly, the real answer is… EVERYONE!