Whether you’re in business, human resources, or social work, chances are you’re going to have to go through training when you take up new positions. It can be tedious for sure; you may feel like your new employers are kicking a dead horse by teaching you things you already know. On the other hand, you could be getting into something totally foreign to you, feeling overwhelmed or out of place. Whatever the situation, on the job training can have definite pay-offs if you approach it the right way.
Training days are an opportunity to make a good first impression on your employers and coworkers. If you feel confident in your new position, treat your training period like a time to show what you can do. Don’t be cocky, but demonstrate your knowledge and experience whenever possible. Take initiative and get things done; those around you will notice and you’ll quickly become a respected team member.
If you’re not as experienced or confident, ask questions. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn. Carry a notebook and jot down important information. Watch how things are done and ask about anything that intrigues you. Soak up new information like a sponge, because this is your chance to learn as much as you can before the stresses of independent work start to pile up. Your training period can be a time to get comfortable in your new environment and start feeling out what your responsibilities will be.
Get to know people. Your new job is not only a step forward in your career, it can be a step forward in your social life as well. Introduce yourself to your coworkers, learn their names, and find out what they do. It’s much easier to work in an environment where you have a feeling of harmony with your coworkers, so start developing good relationships with everyone. You won’t regret it; this is a good time for networking, and when you find yourself in a bind down the road, you’ll have someone that you can go to for help.
Get to know the workplace. One of the most important factors in success at any job is efficiency, and you become efficient by getting comfortable in your environment. You don’t want to be wasting any energy; the idea is to get every job done in the quickest way that takes the least amount of effort. If you’re comfortable in your space and know where to go for every particular task and you won’t be running in circles.
Don’t treat your on the job training like a chore. This is something everyone, experienced workers and fresh graduates of MSW online programs alike, have to go through. Treat it like an opportunity; you’re in a new place, full of new people, doing new work. Learn from everything, make good first impressions and lasting connections, and have a good time. These training days will certainly pay off, but only if you approach them the right way.