In yesterday’s post I wrote about, “Day One of a New job“. I’m happy to report that my first day at West Ridge Church went great. I walked into a pimped out office with new furniture, cool lamps and snacks! Tons of staff members randomly popped in to introduce themselves. But the thing that suprised me was the level of enthusiasm I felt from the staff about starting up The Launch Network. Pastor Brian has done a great job casting the vision to the members and the staff for this new church planting network. Overall it was a very encouraging day.
So once you make it through day one what do you do with the rest of your week? Here are a few things to think through.
Gain an Understanding of the Corporate Culture – Corporate culture is “the way we do things around here.” If you don’t understand the culture of your new organization you could find yourself fighting against it rather than working with it. Refrain from saying, “The way we did it at (your former place of employment).” Instead work hard to ask questions, listen and seek to understand the vision and values of your new place of employment. This week I’ve scheduled four one on one appointments with long standing staff members in order to help me understand the DNA of West Ridge Church. Next week I have several appointments with younger staff members in order to connect with them and gain an understanding of how they view the organization. Week one is just the beginning of learning the culture, it will take a long time but if you approach it with intentionality you can raise your learning curve significantly.
Make Priority based Decisions – Being new you will have a lot coming at you, people wanting to meet with you, new opportuntities, tasks that are “urgent” and expectations from a wide variety of people. The temptation will be to please everyone. However, one of the downfalls of many new employees is to over promise and under deliever, which hurts your crediblity with the team. So keep your top 3-5 priorities in front of you where you look at them every day and make decisions based on these priorities not the pressure you feel to please others.
Identify Key Partners – To make things happen quickly it will be important that you identify who you will be working with. This may be volunteers, team members, or staff from other departments. Regardless of who it is you will need to build a team of people that work together to accomplish the vision. Spend time early on meeting with these individuals getting to know them and allowing them to get to know you. Don’t be so anxious to “get it done” that you miss the relational connections. While you are committed to building a specific program or vision, the most important thing you can build when you’re first starting is TRUST. Take the time to get to know people, their gifts, strengths and passions then you will be able to place them and utilize them in their gifted areas where they will flourish the most.
Connect, connect, connect – Spend time with people. I’ve heard it said, “People are your greatest asset”. But that’s not really a complete statement. The truth is, people’s strengths, wisdom, experience, passion, gifts and influence are your greatest asset. The only way to discover these are to spend time getting to know the people you work with. Don’t forget that it’s not just getting to know their story or their strengths, it’s getting to know their soul. Discover the fresh things that God is doing in their life and how it connects with God’s purpose for bringing you into your new position. Connect, connect, connect.
What else would you focus on in your first week in a new position?