Adjusting to a new work environment is always a challenge, and the same can be said for moving abroad. When you combine the two of those things, it can be quite daunting. Different countries have different approaches to work and the atmosphere created in a workplace, so you’re bound to feel a bit like a fish out of water, at least to start with. While everyone seems to be bursting with advice on other matters, like when you should make the big move, or that you should compare international health plans, not many people talk about the experience of trying to balance a new job and a new country. Keep reading to find out how you can find your feet a bit quicker.
One of the most popular tips when it comes to adjusting to a new workplace is to do proper research on the company. Getting a job abroad is no different. You likely did some preliminary research before your interview, and you probably have a good idea of what the company is like, but it’s still a good idea to refresh your brain a little bit. Doing research will help you learn more about the company’s history and vision, which may give you a better idea of what type of workplace culture you can expect.
It’s been said before and we’ll say it again: the quickest, easiest, and most effective way to feel like part of a team, is by getting to know your teammates. Those would be your coworkers, by the way. By getting to know your fellow workers, you’ll soon learn how things are done, and they’ll likely also help you adjust to life outside of work with loads of helpful tips. Socializing at work is important, so be sure to introduce yourself on the first day and take it from there.
Go the extra mile
This goes hand in hand with the socializing aspect. No one is saying you need to be a kiss-up, but being willing to help is sure to make a good impression on your new boss and coworkers. The start of your new job is the most important since this is when people will be forming their impressions of you. If you show you’re not afraid to put in extra time and effort, they’ll take you seriously and maybe even see you as an ally instead of “the new worker”.
Get into a routine
While it’s natural to struggle with a routine in the beginning of your job, you should definitely try to get one as soon as possible. Having a set time each day when you take breaks and even when you do certain tasks will help you feel more comfortable and also help you be more productive. This is a new job and a clean slate, so it’s the perfect time to get rid of all of your bad habits (including work habits) and really give the job your all.
The only way you’re going to get the answers to your questions is by asking. Often, people shy away from asking questions, especially in a work environment, because they’re scared that it will make them look stupid. Just remember that all of your coworkers were new at some point as well, and they likely remember the feeling. Odds are that people will be more than willing to help you if you ask for help. Your seniors will also appreciate you asking for help more than they’d appreciate you making a mistake because you were too proud or stubborn to admit you didn’t know how to do a task.
One of the best ways to see how things are done in your new workplace is to observe how your coworkers go about things. By observing how they interact with each other and how they do certain things, you’ll learn quite quickly. You can even ask your boss if you could shadow a coworker for a day or two just to get the hang of it. It may sound lame, but copying is probably the easiest way to get into the swing of things. Once you have the basics down, you can start doing things in a way that’s more true to yourself.
Go easy on yourself
No one is expecting you to fit in and know everything on your first day, and you shouldn’t either! Make peace with the fact that it’s going to be an ongoing process, and that there will likely always be room to learn and improve. Everyone makes mistakes when starting a new job, so don’t be too hard on yourself. In fact, you should be extra kind to yourself during this stressful period of your life. Treat yourself by taking a bubble bath, or giving yourself a DIY foot spa treatment. Whatever takes the stress away.