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Your New Job: The 100 Day Plan

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Your New Job: The 100 Day Plan

By Michelle Yozzo Drake   

The stress of writing a killer resume and cover letter, of the grueling interview process and of the nail-biting waiting period until you hear from a prospective employer is over.

Congratulations, you got the job!

You breathe a sigh of relief and maybe even break open a bottle of champagne to celebrate. In mid-gulp of the bubbly it hits you: you didn't just get the job, you got a whole new set of issues to stress about, too.

Often we focus so hard on getting the job that we never think about the next step: actually walking into that organization and starting over with a new team, a new boss, a new set of rules, a new EVERYTHING. It's enough to make your head spin!

So how do you hit the ground running and begin your new job by making a positive first impression?

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Before you get the job...before you even APPLY for the job, you absolutely have to have a strategic plan in place for your career. "Where do you see yourself in five years?" isn't just a standard question every interviewer doles out. It's a powerful question that you need to be asking yourself on a regular basis so you can evaluate your answer and set your career on the right course. Then you can apply for the jobs you're really passionate about, and that is a huge factor in whether or not you'll be successful when you finally do land a new job.

Once you have that fresh new job and you're ready to take it out of it's wrapper, there's a lot to take into consideration: the work and projects you'll need to immerse yourself in, the challenges you're going to face, the new team members you're going to get to know, and so much more. Do your research! I must sound like a broken record because I say this so often, but it's true. Walking into a new job on the first day knowing nothing about the organization, the deparment, the team, you're responsibilities...it's a recipe for failure and disaster. The first impression you give people shouldn't be that you're confused, awkward and more than a little intimated. You want to walk confidently into your new job, prepared to jump in with both feet and knowing that the talents you're bringing to the company are going to set forth great innovation and success.

One of the things that I really stress with the clients I work with is to create a "100 Day Plan" as part of the information you give to interviewers along with your resume. This Plan isn't just to impress the interviewers: it's a strategic map for YOU when you start the new job. Imagine how prepared you'll feel on that first day with a strategy already in place for the first three months of this new job!

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To create that plan, start by thinking about this question: what does your first week look like? What are your objectives and goals? How will you measure your success? Now think about what the end of your first month looks like and ask yourself those same questions. Keep going until you reach the end of the first 100 days and build your plan. At the end of the 100 days, how have you affected the performance of your department? What kind of relationships have you built with your team members? What projects are you working on, and how successful have you been with them? What kind of innovative ideas are you bringing to the table?

Armed with your 100 Day Plan, your entry into this new job should be a proverbial piece of cake. You've got the plan; you've got the tools and talent. Now you just need to execute and position yourself to have a huge positive impact on your new organization.

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“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” – Harriet Beecher Stowe