You have finally secured a position at that illustrious company you have been eyeing for several years now. After a series of interviews with the organization’s most relevant decision-makers, you are hoping this will be the job where you can finally settle in, long-term.
However, there are those certain occasions when our initial impression of a company may not quite correspond with the reality of the job and what it entails. If you find yourself in this position, you are certainly not alone. In fact, a recent study performed by the software company, BambooHR, indicates that nearly 31 percent of all new recruits quit within the first six months of employment.
While sometimes the best response is to immediately seek new employment, it is also crucial to think before you act. Lea McLeod, career coach, author, and founder of the Job Success Lab, shares some strategic advice with employees who have found themselves ultimately dissatisfied at a new job.
1. Identify what works and what doesn’t.
So, if you’ve decided that you “hate” your new job, ask yourself why; and avoid generalizations at all costs. We all feel a little “out of sorts” when we start a brand new job. McLeod states, “You’re used to feeling competent and now you don’t. This sense of discomfort might feel like failure or frustration – and that might be the source of your thoughts of quitting”.
Conversely, there is also the chance that the work is not what you originally agreed to, the culture is negative, or perhaps you’re dealing with the results of poor management. Unfortunately, these are circumstances that may not improve with time.
However, McLeod recommends that new hires also look for aspects of the job that are working. “Maybe you’re working for a great company with potential for advancement. There might be great mentors and experienced professionals on your team to learn from,” adds McLeod. Consider whether the long-term benefits outweigh the current or short-term negatives and/or inconveniences. At this point, you’ll be better adept at deciding upon your next course of action.
2. Communicate with your manager.
Once a company has invested the time and resources in recruiting a new employee, they will likely not be thrilled at the idea of having to start the process all over again, especially after only a short period of time. Therefore, it’s quite likely you’ll be able to utilize this as a form of leverage while being honest about any problems you are having on the job. If the company went through the process of choosing you above another group of candidates, they were probably quite confident in your ability to succeed in the position for which you were hired.
Perhaps there is a circumstance of which your boss is not aware, which can be easily rectified. It’s common – even for those in leadership positions – to unknowingly fall into non-constructive professional patterns. A reasonable manager will prefer that you communicate your thoughts calmly and honestly, rather than suffer in silence while your productivity plummets, causing you to eventually move on to a new opportunity. “[By] asking for what you need,” says McLeod, “you may be able to change the path of this new job”.
3. Create a time frame.
Since all new jobs require a certain period of learning and acclimation, McLeod suggests that unsatisfied new hires dedicate a certain time frame to making things work. “Get a mentor. Meet weekly with your manager. Build relationships with the colleagues and teams around you. Do everything you can in your control to make the job the best experience possible,” says McLeod.
If at the end of the timeline, you’ve noticed that nothing has improved and your feelings toward the position are unchanged, this is when you should consider a plan to move on to something more suitable.
Often, we are swept away by prominent names, highly competitive salaries, and other valuable perquisites when job hunting; yet there are so many other important factors which contribute to the success and sustainability of a job offer. Even if the initial impression we receive during our interview shows potential signs of a negative fit, we may ignore our gut feelings or even rationalize what we’ve acknowledged, simply because we need the job. And who can blame us? That is why McLeod, and most career experts at large, will continue to reiterate the importance of practicing “due diligence” during your job search. Ask the right questions and trust your instincts for a better shot of staying out of that infamous 31 percent.
Stewart, Cooper & Coon, has helped thousands of decision makers and senior executives move up in their careers and achieve significantly improved financial packages within short time frames. Contact Fred Coon – 866-883-4200, Ext. 200