Learn more about communication with this collection
How to adapt to different speaking situations
How to engage with an audience
How to use body language effectively
Have you just accepted a new position at a brand new company? Congratulations, this is an exciting time! Maybe you’re really focused on doing a great job, or the projects you want to start, the organizational processes you want to change. But before you think about any of that, you need to focus on something else first: How to introduce yourself to a new team.
First impressions are extremely important. Things get even trickier if you’re introducing yourself to a new team as a manager, or if you’re working remotely and introducing yourself over Slack or email.
It’s a well-worn saying that you never get a second chance at a first impression. The statement is true. Your new colleagues and employees will start forming their opinions about you within the first minute of meeting you–opinions that will be hard to sway after they’ve been made.
One of the best ways to create a strong first impression in people’s minds is to greet your new office mates with enthusiasm. Positivity is generally a great way to win people over, but it’s even more important at work where morale may not necessarily be in tip-top shape.
So put a smile on your face, show that you’re excited to be a part of the team, and exude enthusiasm. People can read our attitude in our posture, facial expressions and voice–whether in person or through video call. A positive attitude will help endear your new staff to you and help with team development.
There are numerous studies on how clothes influence our performance. What’s equally clear is that clothes also influence the way others view us. In short, the way we look matters.
So make sure you look the part when you arrive at the workplace. Does the team wear suits and ties? Do the same. Waltzing in with board shorts and flip flops–even if that’s how everyone dressed at your last job–isn’t a great first look.
You’re the new one in the room. Even if you’re the manager, and you’ve been brought in to lead the team, there’s a status quo that your new team is probably comfortable with. Destroying it completely at the very beginning won’t win you any friends. So, before you make any changes, get the lay of the land first, by being quiet, observing and asking questions when needed.
Don’t just barge into your new office and start making changes. Learn to listen first. Ask questions and get your team’s opinions.
This approach has two major benefits, especially if you’re in a managing role. First, your team will appreciate it when you ask for their input. We all want to feel listened to, and when the new boss asks what we think, we feel valued.
Secondly, it gives you the chance to learn about your new place of work. You’ll never know what is going on if you don’t listen, and you could potentially harm your new company if you eliminate crucial processes.
It’s important that you take the initiative in the beginning and introduce yourself to your new office mates. Don’t wait for them to come to you. This will make you seem much more approachable as well as likeable.
It might seem challenging to say hello when you’re not in the same room together, but it’s not impossible.
You might be asked to send out an email introducing yourself. In that case, go a bit further than the basics, such as your name and role. Name a hobby or an interest, and sign off with an indication that you’re willing to talk.
When taking the initiative and meeting your new team members, do your best to meet everyone. Don’t only focus on the so-called decision-makers at your new company. Lower-rung employees will notice and you may be seen as a shallow ladder-climber.
Each person in your new organization, from the highest level executive to the greenest intern, plays a role. Acknowledge them all (or at least try to) and you’ll win a ton of first impression bonus points. And who knows? In a few years, that intern may be running the entire show.
Depending on the size of the company you’re now working for, remembering all the names and faces that you just introduced yourself to may be a challenge. That’s where an organization chart (org chart for short) can really come in handy.
So don’t be afraid to ask the HR department for this document. It will help you recall names, understand who does what inside the company, and who to contact for specific things.
Stand out from the crowd and really learn how to introduce yourself to a new team by following up via email with each person you’ve just introduced yourself to. If you can’t do this for everyone, at least message the main people you’ll be interacting with on a regular basis.
You don’t have to write anything long and complicated. In fact, short and to the point is better. Just tell them that you enjoyed meeting them, you appreciate their time, and that you look forward to working with them in the future. Then invite them to reach out to you if they ever need assistance or have questions.
Great working environments are built upon strong office relationships. If you’re the leader, attempt to organize relationship-building opportunities soon after arriving.
Just make sure you consider our third tip (“Read the room”) before barreling through with a plan that no one is interested in. Try to get a feel for what your new colleagues like before launching something like this unilaterally.
Things at your new workplace will be different from the last. You’ve likely heard the saying, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.”
Some things at the new workplace will probably be better. Others might be worse. But you’re here now, and it’s up to you to adapt.
Change what you can when it makes sense. But also realize that you’re starting a new chapter. Keep an open mind and your new colleagues will be much more likely to think favorably of you from the very beginning.
Learning how to introduce yourself to a new team is all very good and well, but applying what you learned isn’t always easy, especially if you’re not the most outgoing person.
But no matter what personality type you have, you can still make a first impression that endears you to your new colleagues.
While first impressions are important, there are ways to swing public opinion back in your favour should you screw up an initial meeting. Keeping these tips in mind from the outset should hopefully help make things easier.
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