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A Survival Guide to Probation Period – 5 Things No One Tells You About

Just when you think you can relax, congratulating yourself on that splendid interview and a dream job offer, the pressure of passing through the probation period kicks in. This initial period can be stressful. A test for both the employer and the employee – the employer can examine if the hired recruit is a good fit, while you gain valuable insights into your job role. 

Here are five crucial things, that can help you navigate through probation: 

  • Committed professionalism
    Everyone admires a professional. Adopt an approach that emphasises the idea that you take your job seriously and deliver quality. Demonstrate competence in adhering to time – be it deliverables, punctuality, or coherence in all communication. While it is tempting to look at your phone’s screen every time a notification chimes, keep it off limits unless important. 

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  • Invest time
    Understand your company, work culture, organisational structure, practices and procedures. Pay attention to read and comprehend the organisation’s policies – where your work fits in, compliances and check points that you should adhere to. It is also important to take note of whom you report to, if you have a mentor to hand-hold you through probation, the duration of your probation period, and if you will be assessed for a skill-set at the end of the stipulated probation, or if you are expected to clear a certification.
  • Learn
    Honest self-assessment, with critical inputs from mentors or senior colleagues, put necessary checks and balances in place. Indicate that you are thankful for any help offered, and if you make a mistake, do not hesitate to approach your higher-ups to appraise them of it. Not only does it indicate assertiveness and portray you as being an employee who knows their strengths and weaknesses but it is also an efficient and effective way to learn.

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  • Know where to draw the line 
    Whether you are a social butterfly or a wallflower, put in efforts to be the right amount of social. Settling into the organisational ecosystem is essential for everyone in the workspace. Interpersonal skills will give you insights into the organisation like none other, but exercise caution and stay away from anything controversial or conflict-inducing.
  • Looks could matter
    While we subscribe to the dicta that beauty is skin deep, it definitely is not an excuse to turn up looking haggard. Follow the organisation’s dress code, ensure to maintain good personal hygiene, and look presentable at all times. It helps when you make a good first impression, and your attire goes a long way in endorsing that.

Use the probation period judiciously to learn everything you can – in terms of skills, the organisation and your career path. Keep in mind, that though you have to meet expectations, this time is also for you to decide if that opportunity is right for you. 

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