So You're The "New Kid." How to Connect With Coworkers
There is a moment when you walk into your brand new office full of complete strangers where you feel overwhelmed by a sense of belonging and completely in your own element. Actually, if you have experienced that consider yourself extremely lucky. For the rest of us, starting a new job can be terrifying. The job itself might not even be the most intimidating part. A room full of brand new human beings who are most likely all successful and established in their working environment, can be enough for any “new kid” to feel like their heart might concave into their stomach. You can allow this feeling to simmer for the first few weeks or you can kick those nerves to the curb. The best way to do that you ask, start working at an amazing public relations agency in Los Angeles or better yet at Konnect PR. For those of you who won’t be working at a PR firm that totally rules, there is still hope. You can become friends with your coworkers!
While it may sound unsettling, here are a few tips to get you started:
- LEARN EVERYONE’S NAME. This may sound very trivial, however it is a small gesture that will go such a long way! When you learn someone’s name it can be the easiest way to open up lines of communication, even if that means just saying hello. Once the person knows that, as the “new kid”, you have taken the time to learn their name and have the desire to say hi, they will be much more open to start a conversation.
- ASK QUESTIONS. Take the time to ask your coworkers questions. Don’t bombard them with questions that will make you look inexperienced. Ask questions that are engaging about work and life. No need to get too personal, but ask questions; how long have they been at the company, did they start at the bottom, how harsh is their commute? These questions are another great way to open up lines of communication between you and your coworkers.
- VOLUNTEER. Nothing will show your eagerness like volunteering to help your coworkers with a project. Better yet, if you have some time to kill ASK them if they need any help with current projects. You help them, they help you. Pretty soon you’ll have a go-to-guy (or gal).
- LUNCH DATES/ HAPPY HOUR. This may be the most courageous you’ll get in the early days. Especially if you don’t feel that you have an ‘in’ yet, but ask your coworkers to go to lunch or happy hour. The act alone could be intimidating because who doesn’t have a fear of rejection. However, look at it this way; they say no and you get out of what could be an awkward situation, OR they say yes and you can pick their brain about the job or discuss whatever drama you might going through at the time.
Bottom line is that you have to put yourself out there. No one has ever made friends by doing nothing! Okay maybe Kim Kardashian has, but I’m convinced that the rules of the world don’t apply to her in the same way they do for the rest of us.
Alright already, go make some friends!
Best of luck,