Q. It worked, I have a job. It is less money than I had hoped for and it took months longer than I anticipated. I am trying to be happy – it has been a tough time. At the same time, I feel somewhat disappointed. I want to start on a high note, and with high energy. I need a plan.
A. Congratulations on the new job! You have been through a major life transition and the emotional roller coaster a job search takes can’t be underestimated. Staying motivated and positive while involved in every aspect of networking, researching, interviewing and dealing with rejection over months is exhausting, and hoping for the best possible outcome is what gives most people the energy to stay the course.
The let down is understandable. It has been a tough time, and job seekers often need to breathe a big sigh of relief to be done with the process. Developing a plan to join your new employer in a positive frame of mind is a great idea, and worth the investment of time and energy.
Many people need to review their job loss. Often former roles, companies and colleagues are idealized, even if there is anger over the separation. People in longer searches question their capabilities and the self doubt can spill over to nervousness about success in the new role. The change in compensation can also be frightening and reinforce the earlier experience of job loss.
Job seekers often use the time before they start the new job to talk to others who have gone through similar transitions. If you worked with a job search group, discuss your feelings, and review the job search process. Look to support from your closest friends and family.
The last step of a successful job search is one step past accepting an offer – it is a strong start. Review the company. Find all the reasons they are a good employer for you. Look at the work you will be doing, and how you can make contributions. Learn more about your new colleagues. Write the update for your new LinkedIn profile and take the time to thank everyone who helped you in your search.
If these feelings of disappointment and sadness continue, consider getting support through your new employers Employee Assistance Program. These calls are anonymous, and you can find the support you need. If that is not available, consider a therapist. You do want to start your new job with all the energy you can, and with a level of excitement that will help you be successful.
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Meet the Jobs Docs
Patricia Hunt Sinacole is president of First Beacon Group LLC, a human resources consulting firm in Hopkinton. She works with clients across many industries including technology, biotech and medical devices, financial services, and healthcare, and has over 20 years of human resources experience.
Elaine Varelas is managing partner at Keystone Partners, a career management firm in Boston and serves on the board of Career Partners International.
Cindy Atoji Keene is a freelance journalist with more than 25 years experience. E-mail her directly here.
Peter Post is the author of "The Etiquette Advantage in Business." Email questions about business etiquette to him directly here.
Stu Coleman, a partner and general manager at WinterWyman, manages the firm's Financial Contracting division, and provides strategic staffing services to Boston-area organizations needing Accounting and Finance workforce solutions and contract talent.
Tracy Cashman is Senior Vice President and Partner of the Information Technology search division at WinterWyman. She has 20 years of experience partnering with clients in the Boston area to conduct technology searches in a wide variety of industries and technology.
Paul Hellman is the founder of Express Potential, which specializes in executive communication skills. He consults and speaks internationally on how to capture attention & influence others. Email him directly here.