Are you stepping into a new role at work? Changing companies? Anytime a situation will be changing, reorganize your time and your things, so you’re as ready as is possible, and don’t end up in chaos. You can’t figure out everything before hand, but thinking ahead eases the stress, calms nerves and lessens the chaos.
Morning & Evening Routines-Checklist
- Does your start time or commuting differ? Work backwards from your arrival time. Write out the steps; this is new so it’ll be useful. Aim to arrive 10-15 minutes early. Walk in calmly instead of stressed. Whether it’s a new role at work or you’re changing companies, “calmly” is the way to show up on day one to show confidence in your abilities.
- Consider your “drive time” estimate (if it’s a new job): time to park, get into the building, and at home, get set up in your car (set up GPS, get settled, turn on podcasts or whatever you listen to).
- Dog/cat/child responsibilities: If you have a partner, do you need to change who does what? All chores and responsibilities are up for grabs. Why not take a fresh perspective anyway?
- Add a 15 minute buffer; there is always a last minute something … a meltdown, a dog who won’t come in, lost something.
- Breakfast. Work it into your schedule and give yourself some quiet sit-down time. Or at least sit down, so you get energy for your morning.
- Exercise, meditation, reading, journaling. If this is part of your usual morning routine, will it still work? Do you need to move something to evening, or even lunchtime at work? Where there’s a will, there’s going to be a way.
- If you have ADHD, filtering out distractions or staying on track may be difficult (may be). If so, write down your new routine, or keep it in your phone. And carry it around with you. Or put notes in the different rooms you use in the morning to keep yourself on track. Use your alarms or reminders as well.
- Food prep: do it the night before with dinner cleanup. And think about, easy to pack lunch foods, snacks, water bottle.
- Clothes prep: night before, as you get changed for bedtime.
- Do the same thing for nighttime: what time to do you need to be asleep to get the hours you need?
Mornings are a short, compressed period of time. Think about how long it is from “awake” to “out” time and also how many things you need to do. Rearrange these puzzle pieces between morning, evening or even weekend prep (mostly for food prep, maybe clothing).
Anything that trips you up in the morning can blow a too-tight schedule out of the water. You might be surprised at how much better you’d feel if you got up 10-15 minutes earlier.
With evenings, time can be compressed, too, especially if you have children. Think about all of these “things to do” as puzzle pieces. How can you move them around? How you can share them differently? Have a family/couple discussion to figure it out together; it’s much easier than alone!
Organizing for Your New Role-Time
Will you manage: projects, people, clients, products, only yourself? That determines in part how to organize your pc folders, email folders and your days.
- How much control over your day will you have? Can you block some quiet times, appointments with yourself, to get your own work done (i.e., if you are managing people or projects). Everyone needs thinking time versus DOing time.
- You may need to take a few days or a week to see what the tempo is of the new role and then figure out how to organize yourself. If you do this, make an appointment on the weekend or on the next Monday to figure out your plan and do it. Don’t let this get away from you.
- How much time do you need to be in meetings or available to others? Then back into how much time you have on your own for individual work. Plot it out on your schedule.
- Use morning to choose your daily priorities and refer to how much time you have in your day. Work at that and see how it needs to change. If you get none of your priorities done, start keeping track of who or what gets in the way. Do you distract yourself with other things? Do others pull you away? Do you say “yes” too often? Then you’ll know the problem to solve.
Organizing for Your New Role-Tasks
- How will you keep track of things to do? Will your usual way work in your new role/company? Consider whether you are at a desk or on the go a lot. Is it easier to put most of this in your calendar (one place to look at everything) or to have a separate calendar and short list for the day’s work?
- Block a 1/2 hour time in the morning calendar to review your priorities for the day. Ground yourself first and it will stay with you when someone asks you for something; you’ll know what you’re balancing.
- Before you leave the office, check on the next day’s schedule and priorities.
- Set up pc, email and paper folders for your most current work (unless you’re totally digital). Most people I work with like to capture things digitally, but they print out: (a) priorities for the day and (b) appointments and (c) have some paper folders, the kinds of things you need to take with you to a client/project meeting. A printed version is visible and “in front of you” so it keeps you focused and it is easier to make choices about your time (when someone asks if you can do xyz, you’ve got your workload right in front of you and can make a better decision). Plus, I hear there is too much risk diving into the computer or phone for the next thing to do.
- Do you have goals given to you, or do you need to figure out a way what they are? How will you do that and what kind of time will that take? By when do you want to have them?
Organizing for Your New Role-People !
- Who will your informal advisors be?
- Who are your new peers? How can you connect with them?
- As a new supervisor or manager, make an effort to meet each person separately and learn about them as people. We all want to work with people we know, like and respect.
- See where you and your area can make an impact, what people’s strengths and complaints are (can you fix any – quick, small wins?) and generally how things are going.
That should get you through your first weeks. Keep a notebook of ideas, a separate section of things to do sooner than later, and your private observations. And then take some time to reflect on all of this, even if it’s on your own time, as it’ll be away from the office and easier to think clearly.
Good luck with your new role and excitement ahead!
As always, if you need coaching around this, I’m at: Sue@CoachSueWest.com or text/cell 603 765 9267
Thanks for being here!
I’ve had many new roles at work and as a volunteer, prior to this business. For 18 years, I was in the corporate world. Read my background and current credentials here.