Starting a new job is daunting. You want to make the “right” first impression and get off to a great start. To understand some of the best practices, I turned to Umesh Ramakrishnan, Co-CEO at Kingsley Gate Partners who has placed board members, CEOs, CFOs and other senior management positions in North and South America, Europe and Asia. Below is his insight and direct advice.
Kimberly Whitler: What are five things you should do in your first week?
1. Sit down with your new boss and ask him or her, at a granular level, what are their pet peeves, work style, preferred form of communication, the cadence of reporting that he or she would like from you and any specifics regarding “the report”.
2. Meet with your direct reports and tell them the same things. Don’t discuss goals yet, but finalize the form of communication you want to maintain with them, how you prefer to work, what types of updates, with what frequency, etc.
3. Walk around on your first day, and introduce yourself to anyone you can meet. During COVID, make a phone call to introduce yourself. Try to get some personal nuggets from your colleagues so you can make personal connections. It’s important to do so as you never get a second opportunity to make a first impression.
4. Review the do’s and don’ts of your company policy manual with HR. Sometimes, a company has policies that you might not be used to, such as sick leave, vacation, or expense reports. Do this on your first day if you have the time. In fact, you should try to do this before your first day, but you can button up the details on day one.
5. Establish a training schedule on processes and systems to make sure you’re ready to go. You don’t want to say that you don’t know your login credentials to your email on day eight!