Training comes with a learning curve so take notes and don’t stress!
When you first are getting acclimated, training can seem a bit overwhelming. You are running from meeting to meeting and absorbing new information while trying to get your feet wet in a new job title.
This may seem daunting at first, but this period should be used to dive in and learn as much as possible. As a new hire, you are thrown into a new environment with new workflows and people. Might as well enjoy the ride!
Some tips for making the most out of your training period at any company:
1. Do your research
Before training, try to find as many learning materials as possible to supplement this process. This could be looking at handbooks or past files that describe what you will be learning. Dive into past client deliverables, project plans, decks and get familiar with stylistic nuances of your new company.
Questions to ask:
- How does formatting differ from what I am used to?
- Are deliverables more comprehensive than previous experience?
- What is the cadence and length of each deliverable?
- What are the purpose of the deliverables and what do they serve as to our client?
- What is my role on accounts?
- How do I fit into projects?
- Where can I plug-in?
2. Don’t be afraid to lend others a hand & get your hands dirty off the bat!
During training, you may have more free time on your hands in the gaps in between, so speak up and ask if you can shadow or assist anyone in the meantime.
There is always work to be done so diving in headfirst gets you exposure and allows you to integrate into the team right off the bat.
By familiarizing yourself with your new company’s way of work, you are able to come in with better questions for your managers and get more out of your training experience.
💡 Tip #1: Don’t be afraid to dive in headfirst! 💡
One of the first things I noticed during my first 6 months is that organization and time management are critical to your success.
I have always prided myself on organizational skills, but I have since taken it to the next level having worked in agencies for the past three years.
In one of my first trainings at Seer, I was shown tips for calendar organization and my life was forever changed.
Here are 4 simple steps that can take your time management and organization to the next level:
1. Color coordinate your calendar events
The way in which you delegate colors is up to you, but personally, I color coordinate each event based on client, which allows me to see where I am spending the majority of my time each week. Another way to color coordinate is to do it by type of event. This could be segmented by meetings, deliverables, working blocks, social events, etc. Ultimately, it is up to you to see what works best!
2. Set up recurring events for things you must complete on a weekly basis
This has saved me so many times! In an agency setting, there are often so many priority tasks to keep track of that sometimes the small ones, get left behind. A way to mitigate this problem is by setting up recurring events to remind you to complete. For example, if you have to create a meeting agenda and recap for a client on a weekly cadence, block off a 15-minute chunk the day prior to your meeting to ensure you have it all squared away. By setting recurring meetings, you can avoid forgetting the ‘little’ things and focus on your priority items without the stress of small to-dos!
3. Track your time on projects
With today’s technology, there are many ways to track time on projects. At Seer, we like to use Harvest to fully understand where we are allocating time on projects. This allows us to increase efficiency and create realistic expectations for client deliverables (i.e. how long it will take what resources we will need, how many people we should staff on a project etc.)
Time tracking ultimately gives us the tools to make educated deliverable timelines and provide accurate project plans overall.
4. Create a personal ‘Master Tracker’
This can serve many purposes for you at any role in your career. It can act as a master to-do list and keep track of your progress on deliverables. It can also serve as a record of completed tasks in order for you to use in providing proof of your growth & accomplishments. As a basic set up, I color code by client, add due dates, important links and status columns to keep me aligned on where I am at on projects and where I need to be.
Below is a snapshot of my tracker as an example:
💡 Tip #2: Organization and time management are key to you & your clients’ success! 💡
When I first joined the team at Seer, one of the first things I noticed was that my calendar was already full upon arrival. Of course, there were welcome meetings and trainings scheduled, but there were also events known as “virtual coffees” scheduled with Zoom which I would later find out is exactly what it says: a virtual coffee with my new, bi-coastal coworkers in the Philadelphia.
This was something I had never heard of before and was pleasantly surprised that people in the company already wanted to meet me! It made me feel like I already knew some familiar faces and was part of the team, which I think could help a lot of new hires transition in.
Tips to meeting your new coworkers and creating a collaborative environment:
1. Don’t be afraid to schedule time with your co-workers (even if they are bi-coastal)
This can seem intimidating at first but will serve you in the long run. You can gain tips and tricks to make your training easier and learn from their personal experience while forming new relationships. This same idea applies to once you are no longer the newbie. Take the time to invite new people to coffee and be open to answering their questions. You were once in their shoes so scheduling time for open conversation allows people to collaborate and form a more cohesive place to share insights and strategy.
2. Manage up and pick the brain of leadership
As I was fortunate enough to learn, at Seer, we have full access to schedule time with superiors. In fact, it’s actually encouraged. It may be intimidating at first, but finding time to meet with leadership within the company is a game-changer!
Within my first 6 months, I was able to meet with the entire leadership team at Seer, which allowed me to be challenged, think strategically, and dig deeper into how others think from a management perspective. I believe that you can learn something from everyone and within each meeting, I was able to gain a fresh perspective, solve problems and learn tangible next steps for career growth.
3. Learn about the company mission statement and live into it!
At Seer, we aim to abide by a code of ETHIC which stands for:
- Enablement – We believe in uplifting the people we serve– our clients, community, and one another–with relentless dedication.
- Transparency – We believe in sharing all that we know with our clients, team, and industry
- Humility – We believe in checking our egos at the door and always defaulting to honesty with ourselves and our clients.
- Intelligence – We believe that curiosity compels us to grow constantly toward an ever-evolving level of understanding.
- Collaboration – We believe that every success story is written by a team.
One tip to getting immersed in your company culture is to dive into the mission statement and see how you can reflect them in your life at work as well as outside of work.
By embodying these attributes in your workflow from the get-go, you may find more intrinsic motivation to bring your best work forward for both you and your company.
“At Seer Interactive, there is no such thing as a black box. In the appropriate context, we strive to share with perfect accuracy and accessibility all that we know — the good, the bad, and everything in between.”
Transparency and teamwork is the name of the game. By living out the mission statement and pushing beyond your comfort zone, you can begin to foster amazing relationships that not only progress you professionally but personally as well!
💡 Tip #3: Don’t be shy – collaborate with your team. It will only help you! 💡
Knowledge sharing is another way in which Seer stays on top of industry movements. Whether that is through internal strategy sharing, industry updates to clients or through ‘Thought Leadership,’ Seer places a heavy emphasis on active communication.
Here are three ways to promote knowledge sharing within the workplace:
1. Engage in team communication (Google Chats, Slack, etc.)
By having a place to encourage team engagement, news and strategy can travel fast. As an active member in the chats, you can learn valuable information and use applicable insights to apply to your accounts so don’t be afraid to share an interesting article or updates within your industry. This could end up serving your clients as well as your teammates clients with cohesive strategies.
2. Subscribe to industry blogs
Subscribe to relevant blogs to keep you updated and in-the-know of breaking news regardless of your industry. For SEOs, I highly recommend the Moz Blog, Google Webster Blog or Search Engine Journal to be kept up to date with breaking trends in the space. This can be utilized internally to update strategy as well as to be shared with clients as well.
3. Take a stab at ‘Thought Leadership’
Create a piece of content that is worth sharing. This could be an article talking about something you’re passionate about or something you specialize in. By sharing your personal experience and tips, you are not only helping your internal team but others in the industry as well.
💡 Tip #4: Share your knowledge internally and externally! 💡
Although cheesy, the biggest lesson I have learned is that teamwork really does makes the dream work.
1. Handwritten thank-you notes
Take the extra time to write a thank-you note to one of your co-workers. It can be as simple as a post-it or a stationery set. The gesture will be appreciated either way.
2. Offer to buy a coffee
The smallest actions make the biggest impact. Kind actions are never wasted and caffeine is always appreciated!
3. Praise on Small Improvements or FYF group chat shoutouts
In order to give visibility to a job well done, use HR software platforms or group chats to give tangible praise that managers can see. This may come in handy for when your coworker is in line for a promotion. Every little bit counts and you could be a piece to help to further their career, which is awesome!
💡 Tip #5: Gratitude goes a long way! 💡
Starting a new job can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Take these five tips into consideration to equip yourself to hit the floor running at any new job!