Although it may sometimes seem like getting a job is harder than the job itself, what you do in the first couple weeks and months of your role will ensure you pass the probation period, secure your job and do not need to go through the job search process all over again.
So, what can you do to ensure you make it through your probation period successfully? Here are some of our top tips.
- Set expectations and measure your progress
Right from the beginning (even on your first day!) make sure you understand your manager’s expectations. Ensure these are clearly laid out and in writing. Understand what all your responsibilities are, including deadlines and what types of targets your manager expects you to hit.
Once you understand your responsibilities and tasks, work towards completing those. If you are asked to do things outside of your core responsibilities, make sure your manager knows and understands the amount of time you are committing to other tasks.
On a monthly, or even bi-weekly basis at the beginning, measure your progress against your targets. Have you completed all your tasks each week? Have you met your deadlines? Ensure you have check-ins with your manager to highlight what you have achieved. If you are finding you cannot meet your deadlines, talk to your manager so he/she is aware and understands why. It will be key to have a record of your accomplishments at the end of the probation period, so document your progress and your meetings to discuss your achievements.
- Build your network
Starting from day one, get to know the people you work with. It is especially important to make yourself known in the company in your first few months so that when your probation period ends and internal reviews are conducted, your colleagues will have positive things to say about you and will be able to vouch for you and your work ethic.
- Find opportunities to stand out
Always be on the look out for ways to go above and beyond your manager’s expectations. Keep your eyes and ears open and volunteer to take on additional tasks that need to be completed. Again, make sure your manager and colleagues know that you’ve taken on additional work as this will really help you to stand out during your probation period. It shows you are a team player, are willing to work hard and can be counted on to support your colleagues.
Any other tips for acing your probation? Let us know in the comments!