How To Make The Best Impression When Starting A New Job

Make your first 90 days on the job a success with these tips.

Melody Wilding, LMSW
The Post-Grad Survival Guide
6 min readNov 16, 2020

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Photo: Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

Joanna was over the moon about accepting a new role as a senior program manager at a consumer products company. But as her start date approached, her new job anxiety set in.

The position ticked all her boxes:

  • It was a substantial level up in terms of title and salary
  • She felt sure the responsibilities and the culture were perfect fits
  • She was excited about the prospect of building an innovation team.

However, Joanna couldn’t shake a feeling of imposter syndrome. She started to doubt herself as her start date inched closer. She second-guessed whether she was cut out for the job she worked so hard to land.

As an executive coach, I’ve seen many leaders like Joanna (name changed), worry about starting a new job. As Sensitive Strivers, they care about making an impact and put a lot of pressure on themselves to succeed. Because they feel deeply, they may over-analyze situations and overthink themselves into a frenzy, particularly in the face of uncertainty and stress.

What gives Joanna and Sensitive Strivers like her a sense of confidence and peace of mind is having a plan.

So, if you’ve recently landed a new role, congratulations! Know that it’s normal to be nervous. By having a plan, you can conquer new job jitters and hit the ground running. These steps will prepare you for success in the first 90 days.

Starting a New Job: Tips for Success

Think of your first 90 days on the job as (1) an extension of the interview and (2) a chance at a fresh slate. Not only is it a crucial time to establish the value you provide, but it’s also an important chance to build healthy relationship dynamics and fix self-sabotaging habits you’ve acquired over the years like overworking, saying yes too much, or not speaking up enough.

Your goals in the first 90 days should include:

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Melody Wilding, LMSW
The Post-Grad Survival Guide

Author of TRUST YOURSELF. Executive coach to Sensitive Strivers. Human behavior professor. Featured in NYT, NBC, CNN. https://melodywilding.com/book