December 7, 2007

Week 1: Getting Started

I have managed to insinuate myself into the "white spaces of the organizational chart" so quickly and thoroughly that I even played a practical joke on someone on Day 4 and it became the office joke this morning. I'm a hit! How did I do it?

Meet everyone. Use everyone's names. Find out what they do. Listen. Write down every acronym and if there's no list, start your own and post it on the intranet (and the website if appropriate). Go to people's offices to ask questions (if appropriate) instead of sending email. Tell them what you need and want for the library. Go to meetings inside and out. I told them I have to accompany them each time they go to the Hill so I can do my job better when I'm at my desk. Listen.

Spend time in the physical library even if it's chaos, especially if it's chaos. Meet the CEO. Commit to not being mousey. Ask which mailing lists you should be on. Read everything that comes across your desk as well as anything lying around the lunchroom. When you are CC'd on a message from the outside, look at the domain name and then go read that website. Introduce yourself. Ask pointed questions about your role. Be proactive. Search all electronic files you have access to for keywords that you know will be part of your content specialty. If there is a phone you can answer, answer it and find out who is asking what. Get the answers. Listen.

And most importantly, listen. And smile.

3 comments:

Public Carpenter said...

Wow. You are successful, quickly. I hope you delight in your position for years to come. Listen and smile...

MommySquared said...

Congratulations on the end of your first week! Sounds like it is going swimmingly...

Jacob Bailis said...

I've never heard anyone talk about their first week at a new job like this.

I hope they're paying you well. :)