How To Integrate Into A New Team
As an employee, finding your place in a new team is not always easy. Building relationships with new colleagues can be difficult. People who are meeting for the first time need enough time to understand and appreciate each other so that they can work together efficiently.
According to Amanda Augustine a Career Advice Expert at Talent Inc, The first three months of any job are an extension of the interview process. An employee who is new to an organization needs to hit the ground running from the first day. As a new employee, you only get one chance at making a great first impression which will, in turn, determine your career trajectory with the company.
The following are how to integrate into a new team:
- Be humble: As an employee, it is true that you must show your skills in order to be respected and appreciated by your colleagues, but that does not mean that you should behave like an individual who lacks humility. If you are not humble, it will be difficult to develop a cordial relationship with your colleagues. Whether you are a young recruit or an expert executive, settling into a new team is a good way to achieve your mission. When you have a good relationship with your colleagues it will motivate you to look forward to waking up every morning to go to work.
- Be enthusiastic: If you are meeting your colleagues for the first time, bear in mind that they will have an opinion about you either positive or negative. No manager will want to have a team member who does not have a positive attitude towards his/her work. In order to successfully settle into a new team, you must be willing to work.
- Do not try to change it all: Your new organization will be expecting your input. It is commendable that you have great ideas on how to move the company to a greater height, do not show them off on the first day. Use the first days in your new workplace to observe, listen and ask questions. Take your time to adapt to the culture of the company in order to have a better understanding of the company’s challenges.
- Follow the rules that your team has set up: The moment you join a new team, expect to have rules to abide by. Find out the rules to avoid violating them. Make sure you absorb all the rules to increase your chances of successfully integrating into the team.
- Learn the communication patterns of your colleagues: Every organization has its own set of norms that may not have been mentioned in the employment letter that you signed before your resumption date. For example, your employment letter may stipulate that working hours are between 9 am and 6 pm, office culture may say otherwise, and working hours are from 8 am to 5 pm. In your first week, It is important that you observe the daily culture of the workplace to have a better knowledge of what the corporate culture is like.
Pay attention to your team’s communication style and you will be able to gain valuable information about the culture of the company.
Also, find out the preferred methods of communication of your team members, for example, face-to-face, phone calls, instant messaging, or emails so you can be sure that you are not interrupting your colleagues’ private space.
- Introduce yourself: If you are joining a fast-paced organization, most people would likely be busy with their jobs and may not realize that there is a new face in the company. When you take your time to introduce yourself, people will know who you are and know why you have been hired. Show enthusiasm when introducing yourself and do your best to remember the names of your colleagues.
While introducing yourself, give a brief summary of your work history such as your past skills and experiences. From the conversations you will have with your colleagues, you will be able to understand the roles and priorities of your colleagues and identify areas where you can contribute to the growth of the organization.
- Define the meaning of success and set expectations: As a new staff in an organization it is important that you arrange a meeting with your manager in your first week and discuss what he/she expects you to achieve in order to be considered successful in your role. By setting mutual expectations, you will have a picture of what your new manager values which will help you to prioritize your work accordingly.
- Show appreciation and be reliable. As a new employee, it is important that you communicate and show your colleagues that you are eager to be part of the team. Do not hesitate to help a teammate who is finding it difficult to complete a project. The best way to get to the hearts of your colleagues is through appreciation, take out time to appreciate people that help you on a daily basis. For example, the admin staff, maintenance people, the cleaners, security, and the receptionist.
- Learn how to navigate around office politics: It is important to be on good terms with people who have worked in the company for years as they will let you know what works and what does not. This will teach you how to navigate around office politics. While you are in the process of adapting to your new workplace, it is important to avoid creating conflict with your colleagues and participating in office politics. Avoid controversial topics such as salary and criticizing your boss.
- Create value for the company: You have been hired by the management team to fill in a vacant space, you were appointed to be an added value to the firm. Make it a priority to deliver on the promises you mentioned in the interview. In your first week, your goal should be to understand the company better and digest all information that you can. From your second week, let your focus be on adding value and making the life of your manager easier.
- Give yourself time: As a new employee, settling in your new environment can be difficult, confusing, and stressful. You are scared that your new boss might just fire you on your first day of resumption if you fail to get it right from the start. The truth is, you may not get it right for the first few months. Give yourself time, do not put yourself under unnecessary pressure. As long as you are taking baby steps each day, you are doing well.
- Be friendly: As a new employee, if you want to integrate successfully into a team, you need to be friendly. When you are friendly, it is easier for your colleagues to hold conversations with you and give you all the necessary information that you need to execute your duties.
- Ask questions: As a new employee, do not hesitate to ask questions. Ask questions to gain clarity. Companies operate on different rules, it is important that you ask your colleagues questions to understand the do’s and don’t of the organization.
Ask your colleagues open-ended questions about the company, their role, or whatever else you want to know. When you ask open-ended questions, you will find that your colleagues will end up giving you information that you would not have expected based on the question you asked. With time, you will begin to understand how things work, and where you can apply your strengths to make improvements and changes.
- Invite your colleagues over for lunch: Inviting your colleagues over for lunch can also help break the ice and make the introductory process much easier.
- Know the management team and how each department communicates with each other.
- Do not compare your previous place of work to your new workplace when you are conversing with your new colleagues.
- If you are not sure about something, simply ask rather than lie about it. Always acknowledge your mistakes rather than concealing them.
- Dress appropriately and professionally.
In conclusion, as an employee, if you feel overwhelmed about your new role, remind yourself that you have been selected amongst many candidates as the best person for the job. Try your best to adapt quickly to the system and make your manager proud.