Questions to Ask when Beginning a New Job

If you’ve earned a new position, congrats! When beginning a new job, it’s important to feel comfortable with the company and your new boss and team. During your first couple of days on the job, ask some of the following questions to help focus your work and set goals. • What are the top priorities for the company and our team? This question is vital to your success. If you think their priorities are XZY but they are really ABC, all of your work may be in vain. Also, ask which projects take top priority. You need to learn to budget your time.

How do you prefer to communicate and approve projects? Establishing a strong communication pattern with your boss will save you endless headaches and wasted time. If your supervisor is not one for interruptions, they may get upset if you keep dropping by to get their feedback. It may be best to set appointments.

How and when will my performance be evaluated? Asking this question will help you structure your work so it is easily measured and evaluated. The more profitable/positive results you can show, the better.

Will there be opportunity for advancement within the company? This will let your boss know you have long-term goals in mind. Caution: This is a question to ask after you have been there awhile. You may want to ask a co-worker you’ve gotten to know, “Do people move around a lot in this company?” This will give you a feel for the type of answer your boss will likely give.

Make sure you start off on the right foot and familiarize yourself with the operations of your new company and your team/boss. And to those lucky folks who are growing their team and bringing on new employees, please express the above info to your new hires! A welcoming work environment is positive for everyone.

Use meetings as a training tool

For many of you up and coming entrepreneurs, your best learning experience is your current job. As a future business owner, the most beneficial thing you can do before you even start your company is to take notes from your current company and other employees.

Long meetings are a great place to start. Consider it training for your future and how you will conduct business in your office. What do you like or dislike about the meetings? When do other employees in the meeting start to “zone out”? What helps meetings run more efficiently? Ask friends and other co-workers for their input. They may be your future employees!

Remember, you can take everything you learn with you. And that’s the beauty of it. You’re learning from both the good—and the bad. So, doing your homework now—even if it is during a dull meeting—will reap great rewards for you in the future

When it's time to say good bye

You work hard. You create an unstoppable team. You build your culture, you nurture each other and together you grow. But eventually, almost without exception unless you make her a business partner, some of your most valuable team members will chose to leave, to spread their wings and become business owners themselves or join other companies promising more opportunity.

It's the type of entrepreneurial spirit you hope to foster in your company, and model for those around you. But it still makes you just as sad when a treasured team member tells you she's taking the plunge.

Trust me. I know. It happened again yesterday morning. On top of the fact that it was Monday morning, and five degrees outside, as soon as she walked in my door, I knew what was coming and it wouldn't be good for me. But it's great news for her. She's starting a business, the business of her dreams. After six years under my wing, she's flying the nest. Hopefully I've given her strong roots in the world of business and now she's ready to fly.

The measure of a successful entrepreneur is how many people she impacts in a positive way - and by how her legacy is spread and supported by the people she's nurtured and grown along the way. In our business, real estate, we've had four rounds of layoffs. Each person we've had to let go hurts and leaves a hole in the culture of our business. It's the same, too, when someone chooses to move on.

It's never easy to say good bye - whether it's because of a financial necessity or because an employee decides to move on. When days like this happen to you - and they do and they are - remind yourself of the strength of your personal brand. About the things you are passionate about, and what has made you proudest as you mentored your team member who is moving on. Tell her how special she is, and how she has changed your life. Never be upset because she's found her wings. There is room in the sky for everyone to soar.

And then always, always, give yourself a hug and know it's going to be OK. Your personal brand is growing stronger everyday. Especially now, through the tears of good bye, if you allow it.

Torn between two loves….

the comfort of having a job and being happy.

In this situation, I always say happiness comes first. One of my favorite realisms is: You never have to stay in a bad situation. It can apply to any situation and carries a lot of power.

If you are in a bad situation at work, at home or life, you need to make a plan and get out! Whether you’re dealing with a bad boss, a snark, or you’ve simply hit a bump in the road, you desire something new. Start your quest with your head held high, with confidence, and begin learning from your current situation.

Leaving the bad situation may first seem like a setback, but it really is an opportunity to open another door. The memory of this experience will help you build a plan for your future. So, move on! The time is now.

And as Charlie Brown says….