How to excel in your new job

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We all want to be successful in our careers. Especially for a newcomer, to have a fruitful career is one of the main goals for moving to a new country. However, for many, this will not come automatically. First, you may need to adjust to how things are done and re-learn what employee qualities are valued. While this could be difficult, it is not impossible. These 10 points will help you adjust and be on your way to becoming a superstar in your new job:

  1. Observe

    In the first few days, watch and learn how people interact, talk or relate to each other. Be mindful of the words they use and their body language. Observe, but don’t be shy – participate. Just be conservative and formal about what you say or do, even what you wear. Sometimes it is better to err on the side of caution, rather than to do something that you may regret later on. Read 10 pointers to help you fit in at work to understand your new workplace better.

  2. Understand the organization

    Know your company’s mission, vision and goals. It is also important to be clear about work expectations (ask for it in writing) and about the criteria by which your performance will be measured (to know more, watch Dr. Lionel Laroche’s YouTube video on “How to Succeed in Canada”).

  3. Communicate

    Ask questions when you are not clear about what you need to do (or if you have concerns) rather than persisting in error. If you do not speak up, your superiors and peers may think that you do not understand. So participate. Have an opinion (be honest but respectful) or ask for feedback on your performance. This will help you do your job better.

  4. Keep an open mind

    There will be many instances when you will compare how things are done in your new workplace to those in your home country. This is human nature. However, redirecting your mind to accepting the fact that things are not better or worse, just different, will be more productive for you. Make the best of what is there, and adapt to new things. You will realize that keeping an open mind will make your transition smoother and faster.

  5. Be open to learning

    Be a lifelong learner and continue improving yourself. This does not only mean formal courses but improving your soft skills and essential skills as well. Read communication expert, Nick Noorani’s article on Canadian Immigrant Magazine: Nine soft skills no immigrant should be without to learn more about soft skills. Meanwhile, watch Phyllis Mann’s “9 Essential Skills” on YouTube below:

  6. Be punctual

    Part of doing your job well is to be punctual – this means coming 10-15 minutes early. This shows respect for your work and co-workers. Also, as in all other workplaces, it is expected that you attend regularly and give advance notice if you will be absent (and make sure that there is a valid reason for it!).

  7. Be a team player but focus on individual achievements as well

    Canadian culture is individualistic; it focuses on each person’s contributions. Moreover, you are expected to be autonomous enough to direct your own work. So do not expect to be micro-managed by your boss. You should be able to do your job independently.

  8. Be proactive

    Take the initiative and suggest improvements to contribute to the success of projects. Also, offer help to your team members when you can. This is the best way to fit in and become truly part of the organization.

  9. Know your boss

    The more you know about your boss’s style of management and goals, the better you will be able to perform and deliver his/her expectations.

  10. Stay positive

    In your adjustment phase, it will be easy to be demotivated. So concentrate on the good things about your job and situation. Stay away from negative people and stop complaining. These will only bring you down and will not solve anything. Focus on the things you have control over (such as yourself) and continue improving.

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Community Resources

Know more about the rights and responsibilities of workers in the article What are employment standards? Also, learn about employment insurance and workplace safety from this site.

Improve your soft skills by learning more about Canadian workplace culture: Canadian workplace do’s and don’ts and Supports to help you in the workplace

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How to Excel in Your New Job

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