New Job Support Group?

miniwinnie

Earning My Ears
Joined
Jun 11, 2019
Hi all! I recently started a new job and it's my first "real job" aside from professional internships and working retail. For one reason or another, it feels as though my anxiety about work is at an all-time high because I am new to the workforce, the job, and the employer I work for. Despite making a few friends and really admiring the company, I can't help but feel overwhelmed by my job and my team. Since I'm new to it all, I've had to learn everything from the start whereas my coworkers are all seniors in their roles. As a result, I feel that they are treating me differently in a negative way -- managers included. Some of my more senior friends say they've felt the same when starting their jobs, but the feeling dissipated after a few months of working.

I'd like to know if there is anyone else out there experiencing the same, and what advice you have for getting through this anxious/tumultuous professional transition! :grouphug:
 

disneychrista

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 26, 2002
Starting a new job is always difficult. Even a job/position in a field that you’ve worked in a couple decades. Each employer does things in their own unique way and you have to learn things all over. I’m just over a year into a new job after being with my former employer for 21 years. I still feel like I’m learning and on the outside sometimes. Hang in there. It just takes time to feel acclimated.
 

Pea-n-Me

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
It's hard to say or comment on what exactly is going on, but I work with a lot of people new to their professional roles, while I am more senior. Here's what I would ask you to think about. Are you interacting with people? I know it can feel intimidating, but getting to know people both professionally and maybe a little personally can help break the ice and give you things to talk about. Even if you're at different stages, you can find commonalities. (And I'd hope they're trying, too!) Are you trying to be a team player as much as you can? It's hard when you're new in the role as it can all seem overwhelming, but try to answer a phone that's ringing, offer help to others if you're able, try to see the bigger picture if you can, not just only what you're doing.

I won't say much about your phone, because I know it can be a sore subject at work and there are a lot of generational differences in attitude about this, but it's probably not a bad idea to minimize your "phone time" while at work, if possible. When we're uncomfortable, it can be a fall back to look at our phones, but that can, I think, be further isolating if you're working with older people. Try to come out of your comfort zone and get involved in the culture or help straighten out the kitchen or something. Of course, you haven't said what type of job this is so this may not actually apply, but I'm really speaking in generalities. Please don't take offense to anything I've said, either - I have two kids your age who are also starting their professsional lives and we've had these same types of conversations at home. Many professionals have some understanding of generational differences so they will, to a degree, understand where people your age might be coming from, but I think those understandings should go both ways.

Hope this is helpful, and I agree that you will likely feel differently as time goes on. DD has been on the job for about fifteen months now and we were recently talking about how different she feels now than she did last summer, i.e. so much more comfortable and adept! DS is only a couple of weeks into his and he's still in that "deer in the headlights" stage, though thankfully managing to stay pretty cool on the outside, lol.
 
  • miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    Starting a new job is always difficult. Even a job/position in a field that you’ve worked in a couple decades. Each employer does things in their own unique way and you have to learn things all over. I’m just over a year into a new job after being with my former employer for 21 years. I still feel like I’m learning and on the outside sometimes. Hang in there. It just takes time to feel acclimated.
    It's always reassuring to hear when others are going through the same thing! Thank you for your reply, it helps!
     

    miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    It's hard to say or comment on what exactly is going on, but I work with a lot of people new to their professional roles, while I am more senior. Here's what I would ask you to think about. Are you interacting with people? I know it can feel intimidating, but getting to know people both professionally and maybe a little personally can help break the ice and give you things to talk about. Even if you're at different stages, you can find commonalities. (And I'd hope they're trying, too!) Are you trying to be a team player as much as you can? It's hard when you're new in the role as it can all seem overwhelming, but try to answer a phone that's ringing, offer help to others if you're able, try to see the bigger picture if you can, not just only what you're doing.

    I won't say much about your phone, because I know it can be a sore subject at work and there are a lot of generational differences in attitude about this, but it's probably not a bad idea to minimize your "phone time" while at work, if possible. When we're uncomfortable, it can be a fall back to look at our phones, but that can, I think, be further isolating if you're working with older people. Try to come out of your comfort zone and get involved in the culture or help straighten out the kitchen or something. Of course, you haven't said what type of job this is so this may not actually apply, but I'm really speaking in generalities. Please don't take offense to anything I've said, either - I have two kids your age who are also starting their professsional lives and we've had these same types of conversations at home. Many professionals have some understanding of generational differences so they will, to a degree, understand where people your age might be coming from, but I think those understandings should go both ways.

    Hope this is helpful, and I agree that you will likely feel differently as time goes on. DD has been on the job for about fifteen months now and we were recently talking about how different she feels now than she did last summer, i.e. so much more comfortable and adept! DS is only a couple of weeks into his and he's still in that "deer in the headlights" stage, though thankfully managing to stay pretty cool on the outside, lol.
    I work in an office setting, so what you've mentioned is very applicable! Not only that, but there is a generational gap among my coworkers and I so I think that sort of facilitates my worries a bit -- there's less to relate to on the surface, but that doesn't mean we can't find common ground either. :-)

    I'm glad to hear your DD has adjusted well! I hope I can reply back to this thread next summer and say the same!
     

    Pea-n-Me

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 18, 2004
    I work in an office setting, so what you've mentioned is very applicable!
    I'm glad!

    Not only that, but there is a generational gap among my coworkers and I so I think that sort of facilitates my worries a bit -- there's less to relate to on the surface, but that doesn't mean we can't find common ground either.
    You might be surprised once you start getting to know people! There are things like food, pets, families, movies, news, etc. that span the generations - all kinds of things to talk about! You sound like a really sweet person, I think you will do just fine, just give it some time. :hug:
     

    lifesavacation

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 24, 2016
    If it makes you feel any better, my son who just graduated college and started a new job 3 weeks ago texted me today that he wants to quit and come work for my business. New jobs can be stressful. There’s a learning curve. Hang in there and give it some time. Every day should get a little easier.
     
  • Skippy918

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 29, 2012
    Starting a new job can be tough. Do you have a team that you work closely with? I would start by talking to them, maybe grab lunch together and get to know them. How is your manager? What’s their management style? I would set aside some time with him or her and find out what their expectations are for the first 90 days. Anyway, good luck! Just remember, all your coworkers have been in your shoes at one or more points in time.
     

    Kathryn Merteuil

    Barden Bella
    Joined
    May 11, 2012
    Sometimes some "stickwithitness" is all it takes. I know when I first started where I am I had a rough time. I think part of the awkwardness was the fact that my team was made up of younger women (mid-late 20's). I am old enough to be their mother. They seriously made it hard on me in the beginning, it was almost like a hazing thing. One of them told me that they actually got called into the boss' office over their behavior. A supervisor from another dept. just happened to see an incident where they were yelling at me and shaming me for a mistake (come to find out I wasn't even the one that messed up, it was somebody else, but they thought I was the one). She went and told our boss how they were acting. I seriously wanted to cry all the way home about every day. Eventually it got better though. They seem to have accepted me now, and we all get along very well. It took me a few months to start fitting in. I guess I just kind of had to prove myself. Now I feel confident with what I do, and I even help train new hires. I have even gotten little "shout outs" on our team chats for being somebody who always helps out and being somebody they can depend on. I also make it a point to be nice and helpful to new people. I know what it is like to feel like I do not belong, and I'd never want somebody else to feel like that. On my annual review, my supervisor said that I "set the standard for what the others should strive to be like"...which that made me feel good about myself.

    I guess the moral of the story is to not let things get you down at first, just keep at it, things might get a lot better.
     

    low-key

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 8, 2011
    I only had 2 jobs in my life, Navy and working for public housing, I stuck with my jobs cause I hated the thought of looking for a new job and learning one, what a hard time in life
     

    miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    If it makes you feel any better, my son who just graduated college and started a new job 3 weeks ago texted me today that he wants to quit and come work for my business. New jobs can be stressful. There’s a learning curve. Hang in there and give it some time. Every day should get a little easier.
    I'm in a similar position myself, and while it's daunting I am hoping to ride out the learning curve and overcome it. Best wishes to your son! Let him know there are plenty of other college grads in the same boat! :goodvibes
     
  • miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    Starting a new job can be tough. Do you have a team that you work closely with? I would start by talking to them, maybe grab lunch together and get to know them. How is your manager? What’s their management style? I would set aside some time with him or her and find out what their expectations are for the first 90 days. Anyway, good luck! Just remember, all your coworkers have been in your shoes at one or more points in time.
    You're so right, it helps to hear that. Thank you for your advice, it means a lot!
     

    miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    Sometimes some "stickwithitness" is all it takes. I know when I first started where I am I had a rough time. I think part of the awkwardness was the fact that my team was made up of younger women (mid-late 20's). I am old enough to be their mother. They seriously made it hard on me in the beginning, it was almost like a hazing thing. One of them told me that they actually got called into the boss' office over their behavior. A supervisor from another dept. just happened to see an incident where they were yelling at me and shaming me for a mistake (come to find out I wasn't even the one that messed up, it was somebody else, but they thought I was the one). She went and told our boss how they were acting. I seriously wanted to cry all the way home about every day. Eventually it got better though. They seem to have accepted me now, and we all get along very well. It took me a few months to start fitting in. I guess I just kind of had to prove myself. Now I feel confident with what I do, and I even help train new hires. I have even gotten little "shout outs" on our team chats for being somebody who always helps out and being somebody they can depend on. I also make it a point to be nice and helpful to new people. I know what it is like to feel like I do not belong, and I'd never want somebody else to feel like that. On my annual review, my supervisor said that I "set the standard for what the others should strive to be like"...which that made me feel good about myself.

    I guess the moral of the story is to not let things get you down at first, just keep at it, things might get a lot better.
    I'm sorry to hear that your coworkers treated you poorly, but I'm glad to know you made the best of it and stuck through the bad moments in order to enjoy the benefits of your hard work today. :goodvibes "Stickwithitness" is my new mantra, and I'll be reminding myself of it when times get tough!
     

    miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    I only had 2 jobs in my life, Navy and working for public housing, I stuck with my jobs cause I hated the thought of looking for a new job and learning one, what a hard time in life
    It certainly isn't easy and I wish I could do the same, but they say that change is good for personal growth! Let's hope they're right! 😂
     

    nkereina

    Last chance to lose your keys.
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2009
    I agree with PPs that it just takes time. Just remember that every day that goes by will be a little bit better than yesterday. Remember how far you have come from your first day. No one in their role, no matter how senior or tenured, knows everything. There's always room for growth and to learn something.

    I have been with the same company for 7 years and started a new role in a different department back in October. Its only recently that I've felt comfortable enough to say I know what I'm doing and not worry about what challenge each day will bring. It seems like a slow process, but if you stop and look back at how much you know now, it helps to keep you motivated.

    Everyone is in the same boat at the beginning, so just stick with it a while to see how it pans out. My SIL is on her 5th job in less than a year because she allows herself to get so overwhelmed and anxious about the facets of a new job that she talks herself into hating the job. But in reality, she is just burning bridges and will never learn and grow roots in a company if she's just switching jobs every few months. IMO, its better to ride it out and see how things go than to roll the dice starting all over again.
     
    Last edited:

    holden

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 21, 2005
    Don’t be afraid to reach out to a therapist if you need to. Anxiety can become overwhelming. Seeing someone to talk through your feelings is a great way to take care of yourself. I’m not saying you need to but wanted to tell you not to be embarrassed or afraid to do so if you feel like it would help.
     

    lifesavacation

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 24, 2016
    I agree with PPs that it just takes time. Just remember that every day that goes by will be a little bit better than yesterday. Remember how far you have come from your first day. No one in their role, no matter how senior or tenured, knows everything. There's always room for growth and to learn something.

    I have been with the same company for 7 years and started a new role in a different department back in October. Its only recently that I've felt comfortable enough to say I know what I'm doing and not worry about what challenge each day will bring. It seems like a slow process, but if you stop and look back and how much you know now, it helps to keep you motivated.

    Everyone is in the same boat at the beginning, so just stick with it a while to see how it pans out. My SIL is on her 5th job in less than a year because she allows herself to get so overwhelmed and anxious about the facets of a new job that she talks herself into hating the job. But in reality, she is just burning bridges and will never learn and grow roots in a company if she's just switching jobs every few months. IMO, its better to ride it out and see how things go than to roll the dice starting all over again.
    So true.

    My very best employee struggled the first few months. I saw it happening and so I met with her regularly to check in and see if I could do anything to help her. What she repeatably said was that she was used to being the person everyone came to with questions because she knew everything. And in her new role with us she didn’t know any of the answers and was making mistakes. That was a very uncomfortable place for her to be in. Some people are more comfortable being “in process” than others. When you’re learning new software and other processes and trying to adjust to a new work culture (just the culture alone can overwhelm), you’re going to make mistakes or feel out of place. That can be really uncomfortable, but it does get better over time.
     

    miniwinnie

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2019
    I agree with PPs that it just takes time. Just remember that every day that goes by will be a little bit better than yesterday. Remember how far you have come from your first day. No one in their role, no matter how senior or tenured, knows everything. There's always room for growth and to learn something.

    I have been with the same company for 7 years and started a new role in a different department back in October. Its only recently that I've felt comfortable enough to say I know what I'm doing and not worry about what challenge each day will bring. It seems like a slow process, but if you stop and look back and how much you know now, it helps to keep you motivated.

    Everyone is in the same boat at the beginning, so just stick with it a while to see how it pans out. My SIL is on her 5th job in less than a year because she allows herself to get so overwhelmed and anxious about the facets of a new job that she talks herself into hating the job. But in reality, she is just burning bridges and will never learn and grow roots in a company if she's just switching jobs every few months. IMO, its better to ride it out and see how things go than to roll the dice starting all over again.
    I'd be lying if I said I didn't consider to chickening out too 😔 I'll be excited to see how far I've come in a year from now! Best of luck to you in your new role!

    Don’t be afraid to reach out to a therapist if you need to. Anxiety can become overwhelming. Seeing someone to talk through your feelings is a great way to take care of yourself. I’m not saying you need to but wanted to tell you not to be embarrassed or afraid to do so if you feel like it would help.
    You're absolutely right! I have considered it and I think it would be a great way to cope with/discuss how I'm feeling...that, and with the Disboards community! 🤗

    So true.

    My very best employee struggled the first few months. I saw it happening and so I met with her regularly to check in and see if I could do anything to help her. What she repeatably said was that she was used to being the person everyone came to with questions because she knew everything. And in her new role with us she didn’t know any of the answers and was making mistakes. That was a very uncomfortable place for her to be in. Some people are more comfortable being “in process” than others. When you’re learning new software and other processes and trying to adjust to a new work culture (just the culture alone can overwhelm), you’re going to make mistakes or feel out of place. That can be really uncomfortable, but it does get better over time.
    I am in the same place as your employee! I used to know everything and now I'm a fish out of water. Thank you for your kind words; I'm looking forward to feeling more comfortable in due time. :-)
     

    RUDisney

    Mom to Ivan & Kristina
    Joined
    Apr 8, 2002
    I worked for my company for 6 years when it sold to another company. For the first year, nothing changed. As of last August, we were fully integrated and I felt like I went from a senior back to kindergarten.

    I read somewhere, and many times, that it takes 6-months to feel really comfortable in a new job. That held true for me. While there are still things that I learn every day, I feel comfortable doing my job now and my boss has me lined up for a promotion.

    Give it time and you'll do fine.
     

    tvguy

    Question anything the facts don't support.
    Joined
    Dec 15, 2003
    I've worked for three companies in the same industry in the same city in the same job since 1979. It was always amazing to me how differently things can be done.
    I was lucky to always be welcomed and always getting support during the learning process. I can see where the lack of support could be troubling
     


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