Starting a new job remotely was always going to be slightly different than meeting everyone in person on the first day. I have probably learned more about myself during the first two months with Anderson Anderson and Brown Consulting than I could have ever anticipated.
I joined AAB Consulting at the end of August. Everything I could possibly need kit wise, arrived at my home in advance and was set up ready to go on the first Monday morning. The first few weeks were a bit of a blur, with a good balance of intro video calls with my new team and plenty of reading up on the projects I was due to be working on.
Building the bridge between starting something new, knowing almost nothing about it and getting to a place where you feel in control and on top of things, takes time. How about going through that process virtually? It takes even more time. I have learned to be patient with myself and take the pressure off (only slightly mind you!) accepting that things will not “click” straight away.
With the added limitations resulting in a remote and virtual workplace, now more than ever, communication is key. The immediate answer doesn’t necessarily mean more of it, in fact it’s the opposite. This is where the good old, “quality over quantity” has really prevailed. Regular short catch ups on specific projects, weekly team check-ins, slack for informal chat and phone calls... yes phone calls, with perhaps some fresh air thrown in have been very welcome. The AAB team have developed a great blend of autonomous working whilst still offering structure and support, a testament to the quality of the leadership.
The approach the group takes to prioritise wellbeing has been really refreshing. We are encouraged to do what you must, to show up as the best version of yourself. Whether that be getting the daily steps up, working away from the laptop where possible or having short calls to just see how each other are doing, have all really helped combat the classic challenges we are all experiencing.
For anyone starting something new for the first time, a great recommendation which helped put the first few weeks into perspective for me, was Brene Brown’s Unlocking Us podcast on FFT’s where she talks about her strategy for throwing yourself in to unknown first times versus tapping out and shutting down. This was relevant to not only the job but also the pandemic and provides an entertaining and realistic approach to doing something new.
I can safely say I have made it past the initial few months and now looking forward to what this next chapter brings!