And so it begins. I’m stepping into yet a new job. My life as a contractor at Hotel CaliforniaSoft is all but over. I’ll admit, it’s bittersweet. I’ve loved working in the contract capacity and have really up’d my PM game by doing so. Still, it’s time for me to be a full time employee again and add value to a company I’m hoping I’ll be at for some time. I’m ready to settle in and add value to a small company.
With that being said, my last days at Hotel CaliforniaSoft were a little like having Senior-itis. I had completed everything pending and just really had to show up for last minute questions and what not. One team member (she’s a vendor) arranged a going away lunch. The day of the lunch everyone but her bailed. So she and I went to lunch. It was great fun…then she realized she forgot her wallet. So my goodbye lunch was not only small, but I paid. I will say she and I laughed and laughed about that. And today she brought me $$ to cover for the lunch.
The other team members who couldn’t make it, put a goodbye “coffee” date on my calendar. As that time approached people were very apologetic about having other things to do.
Here’s the thing….I’m a vendor. I’m not expecting any big going away anything. I’ve appreciated their attempts, but it really isn’t necessary. I did get a very nice card from them though.
As the new job approaches, I’m starting to feel that new job anxiety. The clean slate. The new opportunity to really shine – no negativity about failure here. I’ve started many a new jobs in my life and have, over the years, created a list of important questions to ask on the first day. Because I’m sure you all are going to want to know what they are, I’ve listed them below in no particular order.
- To your manager – what are his/her expectations of me in this role?
- What do you want me to accomplish by end of the first week? Second week? Third week?
- What is the review process and how should I prepare for that?
- Where’s the bathroom?
- Is it ok to eat lunch at my desk?
- What method of communication do you prefer?
- Do you have an open door policy or do you have a preferred time for questions to be asked?
- What keeps you up at night?
- Who are the main players in the org that I should meet and get to know right away?
- Do you want weekly status reports? If yes, how do you want them – email, in person etc.
I’ve found over the years, that it’s not about peppering the new manager with all these questions immediately, but as the day/week progresses. The most important question by far is how to communicate with the new manager. Each manager is unique and having that little bit of info is really helpful.
In other news, last weekend I drove to Bellingham to attend the Harvest dinner hosted by a friend I've known for a really long time. He and his wife host this fabulous dinner every year and he makes the treck to Eastern Washington for the prime rib and then dry ages it for 7 days. Then of course he's an expert cook and did the prime rib justice.