What to do in the first week of your new job

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Listen & Learn
Effective listening skills are important in everyday life but in the medical industry they can mean the difference between life and death.  Listening skills are essential for ‘patient- centred care.’  Anyone working in the medical profession must, at all times, show undivided attention and must never interrupt a patient when speaking – thus active listening is based on honesty, trust and understanding.

Listening skills are an important part of communication, thus listening is a professional, academic and daily skill. First impressions are remembered, watch what you say and do; it is crucial to possess valuable listening skills, listen attentively to the objectives of your boss and spend the first week learning who the key people will be in getting your job done. Listening is imperative to effective working relationships among employees, patients and between management and staff.

Organise your desk/work area/workload
People working in the medical industry must be tidy, organised and clinical this must be demonstrated by a tidy desk or work area, what patient wants to see a cluttered and untidy desk?  First impressions stick. An orderly desk reflects attention to detail and ability to be organised.

It is crucial to develop an effective strategy for managing your time and workload; because it will often be the case that you will feel you do not have enough time to complete all of your tasks, which will lead to stress but bear in mind that when you are organised your productivity will increase. The ability for an employee to carry out their work duties efficiently cannot be over-stated, good planning is one of the most valuable assets which an employee can have because it ensures completion of work.  Sound and competent organisation gets the best out of people.

Make sure you have all the necessary items in order to perform you work, such as laptop, mobile phone and stationery. Find out where the coffee and tea are kept, do you need someone to show you how to use the coffee maker?  Who washes the dishes?  Do not leave dirty cups around. Also take the time to check your tax code is correct! 

Show enthusiasm to research important medical topics relevant to your role
Research is crucial in the medical profession as medical treatments would not happen without health research; behind every discovery of a new medicine and treatment are thousands of people who were involved in health research; bear in mind that when you support medical research, you are helping medical researchers build the future of medicine.

Take the time to get to know “all” people around you
Smile, be pleasant and take the time to introduce yourself for example, if you are in a lift, kitchen or work-canteen take the time to be social; it is important to acknowledge other people in the workplace. A pleasant hello is always important before entering into a conversation about work.

Remember manners at all times say please and thank you and treat ‘all’ people with equal respect, by being friendly you are making yourself approachable.  Modern day work life is now at a fast pace which results in stress but people are less tense if they feel the people around them are friendly and as a result increases their confidence.

Strengthen your new connections on social media but reconnect with former colleagues
Up-date your new profile across your own social media network and make yourself a valuable contact. It is important to keep in touch with former colleagues it does not have to be time consuming, send them an email, or meet for coffee, offer advice and help whenever needed, as one day you may want a favour returned.

Make notes
Taking notes is a great way of helping you identify important concepts; getting au fait with a new job is a gradual process and it is impossible to remember everything, therefore you need to constantly bank your knowledge and it is imperative to record activities as this will help you in your personal development within the company/hospital as well as increase your confidence.  Write down any relevant dates, topics or any future events and prepare any relevant research.