On Being the New Kid on the Job

Your resume escaped the Delete key on the HR recruiter’s keyboard, and after the second (or maybe even the third) round of interviews and reference checks, you get the long-awaited call:

You’ve been offered the job!

Now, even more hard work awaits … and I’m not talking about what you were actually hired to do.

I’m talking about things like figuring out the culture of your new organization, fitting in with your coworkers, and learning your boss’s communication style. Starting a new job can be incredibly exciting, but all of these aspects can sometimes make this transition downright nerve-wracking.

It has been six weeks since I started working at CLP-Main, hence the reason why these thoughts are on my mind. Everyone has been incredibly friendly and helpful, making this the fantastic opportunity I knew it would be, and my inner five-year old self is in a perpetual state of awe that I get to come to the Library every day.

(A side note: here at the Library, we have some great resources on how to find a job. Do you know about CLP’s Job and Career Education Center (JCEC)? It’s open every day of the week and our staff provides personalized resume assistance, mock interviews, computer classes and Internet access and so much more. Check out the Jobs and Careers section of the CLP website to see all that the JCEC can do for you.)

I’ve been doing some reading on successful career transitions and starting a new job, so I thought I would share some of my favorites with you.

Getting Things Done by David Allen

Whenever I start a new job, I try to reread or listen to Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress Free  Productivity, by David Allen.  Since getting my first “real-grown-up” (i.e., post college graduation) job more than 20 years ago, I’ve tried what seems like every time management trick and system imaginable. David Allen’s approach somehow makes the most sense for me. I love all of David’s  books (I’ve read him enough times that we’re practically on a first name basis) and anything else that he has to say.

The First 90 Days

The First 90 Days: Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter  is an updated and expanded version of Michael D. Watkins’ popular series of books that give step-by-step plans for navigating workplace transitions. It seems especially helpful for young professionals or people in the early stages of their career,  or workers who may be switching to a new role within their organization or a completely new (to them) field.


The McDonald’s near my college campus was like a five-star restaurant. Every single customer was greeted by the most cheerful and friendliest guy I have ever encountered.  He held the door open, asked you about your day, stopped by your booth to see how your Big Mac was, and engaged you in some witty repartee.

People loved this guy. It’s been 22 years since I last laid eyes on the guy and while I can’t remember his name, I think of him every single time I walk into a McDonald’s.  Any McDonald’s. I’ve connected him with that experience so strongly that he has come to be part of what I associate with the McDonald’s brand, even two decades and two kids later.

Seth Godin would know the name of this guy.


In Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? Seth Godin writes about the qualities and characteristics of linchpins – those people (like my McDonald’s guy) in every organization who are the go-to people, who seem essential, who don’t know the meaning of the phrase “not my job.” Godin’s view is that as managers, we have the ability (and some might say the responsibility) to develop linchpins among our employees.  But more importantly, as employees we have the ability to develop linchpin characteristics within ourselves.

With every new job, with every new opportunity that life brings us, there’s always room for self-improvement – and the Library offers countless resources to help put you on the path toward professional and personal success.

As for my own job here at the Library?

I’m lovin’ it.

— Melissa F.

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