We asked our staff to share examples of the kinds of questions that clients sometimes ask, and the answers they offer. This question from a client came to Cindy Chen, an Employment Counsellor at JVS Toronto Employment Source Scarborough.
Clients often worry about what would happen if, when they start a new job, they discover that it isn’t what they imagined. What can they do?
Sometimes when you start a new job, things don’t turn out as you had hoped or imagined. This, combined with the stress of starting a new job, can make the new workplace seem intolerable.
It’s important to figure out objectively why you don’t like the job: what makes it so difficult: the tasks, the people, or both?
If it is the tasks, keep in mind that, on average, it takes about 3-6 months for new employees to really feel comfortable with the tasks or responsibilities of a new position. If it is the people, try to get to know your new colleagues better and work on giving them benefit of the doubt. Perhaps the atmosphere or work culture is different and it requires some time for you to adjust and find your own place within it. Try introducing yourself to colleagues and get to know them; small talk is sometimes very important and beneficial. Join lunches and other social opportunities. If you can find one person who is helpful and open to sharing, perhaps turn to them for support.
Once you have determined that you have tried your best and done all you can to fit in, but it still seems like a bad fit for you, start looking for a more suitable job. Try not to leave your current job until you have secured a new one. Do your best to schedule interviews at the beginning or at the end of the day, so you don’t disrupt your current work schedule.
Now that you know more of what is not suitable for you in a workplace, use that knowledge to find a more suitable workplace. Be sure to ask questions at the interview to find out what it would be like to work at that place, such as: how would you describe the work atmosphere here, how would you describe the management style at this organization? What’s a typical day like here? What aspects do you think will help an individual excel here or at this job?
When a new job seems to not be working out, it is important to be patient, yet decisive. Sometimes, once you have been there for a while, you might get used to, or find ways of dealing with aspects of the job that you initially found to be challenging. Hang in there, do what you can to make it work, but once you decide it is not for you, begin to look for something else. Use what you have learnt to secure a better suited job next time around.
Cindy Chen is an Employment Counsellor at JVS Toronto Markham Employment Source. She is trained as a Registered Social Service Worker (RSSW), and describes herself as an advocate of inclusion who is passionate about helping others.