In this series, I’ve talked about the responsibilities of the organization and the hiring manager in on-boarding new remote business analysis professionals. Yes, a lot of the responsibility for this program are on the hiring organization. But, remote business analysts, you are not a passive player in on-boarding. You have responsibilities too! Here are the 4 L’s that the remote business analyst is accountable for.
Leave Your Ego at the Door
Your organization may have hired you because you are a “rock star” (this is not a term I like, by the way) but if you arrive with the arrogance and flaky temperament of a rock star, you won’t keep your job. The first 90 days of your employment are your opportunity to get to know your employer, its culture and it’s their opportunity to get to know you. Behaving poorly in the first few months of your new job is a red flag to your new employer.
You serve yourself and your new colleagues well by being humble, patient and coachable so you can build positive relationships.
Listen (and Ask Smart Questions)
Your first 90 days will be full of new faces, processes and projects. Our brains can only take in so much information into short term memory and “file it away” for later use. Make time to listen to comprehend. Listening to comprehend involves:
- Being patient as information is shared with you,
- Paying attention,
- Paraphrasing what you’ve heard the speaker say, and
- Asking questions to clarify what you’ve heard
When I say “ask smart questions,” I’m not referring to the acronym SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound). I’m referring to asking questions that reflect that you have understood what you have learned and you are incorporating it into a view of the topic that represents your understanding. This not only shows that you are investing in the on-boarding program, but you are also modeling the (essential) skills of listening, interviewing and learning.
For more on listening, check out my post The Difference Between Hearing and Listening.
Learn and Then Apply Your Learning
You’ve been hired by your new employer because you have the right mix of skills, knowledge, experience and personality for the position. But you don’t know everything about your new company. Your organization’s on-boarding program will expose you to the processes, tools, and culture that will make you successful. Commit to learning what they are providing you. They are giving you the keys to success in their company. Then as quickly as possible demonstrate that you can apply what you have your learned. This gives you the opportunity to show your commitment to the organization and it provides opportunities to clarify anything you may not understand.
It’s not important that you love what you are learning. It’s irrelevant for you to talk about what you’ve done at other jobs before this one. In the early days of your new job it’s important for you to understand how things are done at your new company so that you can become productive as quickly as possible. Depending on the organization, you may have an opportunity in the future to improve the processes, projects or culture but in the early days, it’s important for you to learn how your organization works.
But what if your new employer doesn’t have an on-boarding program? Well, that’s what the 4th L is all about and I’ll cover that in the next post.