2 answers

What are some important things about this job I should know about?

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2 answers

Harleen’s Answer

Updated

Hi Dylan - great question. Before joining my first job, I had a few important questions I wanted to make sure I had an answer to:

  1. As an employer, how is the Company investing in my personal and professional development? Am I going to be learning something every single day at my job, or am I going to be doing repetitive tasks day-in and day-out? I knew before starting that I enjoy a challenge and I wanted whatever firm/Company I work for to do more than just give me a paycheck - learning each day was important to me, and that's something I wanted to make sure my Company had the resources to provide that to me.
  2. Is the Company flexible when it comes to work/life balance? Most of us don't shy away from hard work, but I also wanted to make sure the firm I work allows me to "disconnect" when I'm on vacation (barring pressing deadlines).
  3. Where does upper management envision the Company will be in the next 5 years? It was important for me to be at a firm that is continuously growing, whether from a technology perspective or a people perspective. I wanted to be at a firm with an ever-evolving work environment that keeps me engaged and interested in the field I was going into.
  4. Is there an opportunity for me to switch roles easily within the firm? I wanted to work for a firm large enough that allows me to explore different avenues for my career. I knew that I wanted to be at a place that did not make me feel "stuck" in one spot - having that flexibility to move/explore different groups during my career at the firm was extremely important.

The list of questions I listed above were important to me and my working style. I strongly suggest creating a list of items that are important to you/your personality/your working style. When you go in to interview - make sure you ask those questions! Always remember, an interview is not a one-way street - you should be assessing whether the Company/firm you potentially will be working for is a good fit for you as well.

Harleen recommends the following next steps:

  • Create a list of items that you believe are important for you to have as someone entering the job market. What work environments/working styles fit your style and personality?

Kristy’s Answer

Updated

I love the above answers. Only one addition I'd make is to try and get to know your immediate supervisor. It is so important to job satisfaction and learning, for you to have someone who is invested in you, and who you can trust and learn from. If you haven't spent much time with them, try to get to know them before diving in. If there is a lot of mobility within the company you may not work for them for very long, but it is equally likely that you'll have the same boss for several years.

Lots of research shows that an employee's happiness and engagement (a measure of job satisfaction and productivity) is most impacted by their immediate boss, but I have found that very few people take the time to really 'interview' their boss as they are interviewing for jobs.

Kristy recommends the following next steps:

  • If you are still in the 'interview' phase, try to take your supervisor for a more informal conversation - maybe over lunch or coffee out of the office - and get to know them on a personal level. Ask them about their management style and how they like to communicate, how they provide feedback and professional development, to make sure you will work well together and you can learn from them.