10 Steps to Impress in Your New Job and Hit the Ground Running

Posted by Ashley Jones
new job

Congratulations! Your job search efforts have paid off and you’ve landed the job of your dreams. Now, it’s time to roll up your sleeves, dive in, and make your mark. Starting a new job is like embarking on an exciting adventure full of new faces, challenges, and opportunities.

Whether you’re stepping into a new in-person role, embracing the flexibility of remote work, or navigating a hybrid schedule, here are some essential tips to help you thrive in your new cleared role:

1. Thank Those Who Helped You Land Your New Job

To put a bow on your job search that just wrapped up, take a moment to thank those who supported you along the way. Reach out to anyone in your network who played a part in your job search. This might include your references, anyone who gave you a referral or reviewed your resume, etc.

Keeping these connections strong is not only courteous but can also open doors to future cleared opportunities. So even though your job search has concluded, make a point to keep nurturing your network before you need to call upon them again for your next job search.

2. Prioritize Punctuality

Whether you’re logging onto a Zoom call or stepping into an office or SCIF, punctuality is key. Arriving on time demonstrates respect for your colleagues’ time and portrays you as reliable and committed. You know what they say about first impressions.

If you’re working remotely, be mindful of time zones and ensure you adjust your schedule accordingly to join meetings promptly. And simulate arriving early to leave time for technical issues or software updates.

3. Dress Appropriately for Your Setting

It’s important to understand the dress code of your new workplace. If you’re transitioning from the military where you wore a uniform each day, it may be time to invest in a whole new wardrobe. Take a cue from what you saw during your interviews, and ask your recruiter or hiring manager for advice if you’re unsure what to wear.

While remote workers may wish to take advantage of sweats and slippers, dressing professionally (at least in business casual) will help put you in the right frame of mind for excelling in your new job. You’ll also be camera-ready for any spontaneous video calls—which may be more frequent your first couple of weeks on the job as you get to know the team you’ve just joined.

4. Establish Clear Expectations with Your Manager

Discuss goals and priorities to define what success looks like. Open communication with your manager is essential for setting clear expectations.

If you’re working remotely, you can’t simply walk over to your manager’s office for a quick question. Do they prefer email, phone calls, or another communication channel? What time of the day is best to reach them? Ask these kinds of questions upfront to establish a solid foundation for remote collaboration and maintain productivity in your new role.

5. Foster Relationships with Colleagues

Make an effort to build relationships with your new coworkers for a smooth transition. Show them that you’re a team player and genuinely interested in learning more about them. Take the initiative to introduce yourself whether you’re working directly together, crossing paths in the break room, or meeting on a conference call or video chat.

If you’re working remotely, you need to be especially proactive and intentional about building relationships. Establishing strong connections with your team members is essential for effective collaboration and a sense of belonging for remote workers.

6. Listen More, Talk Less

You’re the new kid on the block, so take the time to listen attentively and ask questions. For now, listen and learn. The time will come when you can contribute effectively.

For remote workers without the benefit of face-to-face interactions, active listening is crucial. There are more distractions like dogs and doorbells that can make it hard to pay attention. Set yourself up for success by limiting distractions and setting boundaries with anyone else in your remote workplace. And pay close attention to non-verbal cues during virtual meetings to ensure effective communication and comprehension.

7. Be Accountable

Hold yourself accountable for meeting deadlines and fulfilling commitments. If challenges arise, proactively communicate with your manager and teammates to address issues and seek solutions collaboratively.

Remote and hybrid workers may benefit from using project management tools (like Asana or and regular check-ins to track progress and ensure accountability despite physical separation.

8. Maintain Quality Standards

In both your work and communication, strive for excellence. Take the time to review and refine your deliverables, ensuring accuracy and professionalism in all interactions.

Remote workers should pay extra attention to written communication, as it often serves as the primary mode of interaction. Proofread emails and messages to convey your messages clearly and effectively.

9. Immerse Yourself in the Company Culture

Take time to familiarize yourself with the organization’s values and norms. Observe how colleagues interact, communicate, and collaborate, and strive to integrate yourself into the established culture.

Also take advantage of any support that might be available like onboarding buddies, mentorship programs, or Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). These avenues can provide valuable insights into the company culture and help you navigate the nuances of the workplace more effectively whether you’re working in-person or remotely.

10. Embrace Personal Growth

Your new job is like a blank canvas. Use this opportunity to shed one bad habit that has been dogging you professionally. Whether that’s being on time for meetings, keeping better notes, or being more organized, this is your chance to improve one thing about yourself professionally before bad habits set in.

Starting a new cleared job can be both exhilarating and challenging. Approach it with dedication and a positive mindset, and you’ll shine in your new role. Best of luck as you embark on this exciting chapter!


  • Ashley Jones

    Ashley Jones is ClearedJobs.Net's blog Editor and a cleared job search expert, dedicated to helping security-cleared job seekers and employers navigate job search and recruitment challenges. With in-depth experience assisting cleared job seekers and transitioning military personnel at in-person and virtual Cleared Job Fairs and military base hiring events, Ashley has a deep understanding of the unique needs of the cleared community. She is also the Editor of ClearedJobs.Net's job search podcast, Security Cleared Jobs: Who's Hiring & How.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 26, 2024 12:39 pm

One thought on “10 Steps to Impress in Your New Job and Hit the Ground Running”

  1. If you were entertaining multiple offers, be sure to let the other companies know you are pursuing other opportunities. You may also need to change your job seeker profiles on all the job boards and LI to reduce all the e-mail traffic so you can concentrate on the ones that pertain to your new job while informing your network they can “stand down” after starting in a new position.

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