First of all, congratulations on the next chapter in your career. You should take a break between leaving your current job and starting your new one. This gives you a chance to decompress, attend to personal matters, and start your new opportunity refreshed and ready.
While successful transitions start during the interview process, there are things you can do to help ease the transition.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give is to carry a notebook. This way you can write things down and refer back to them. Your new employer should also have a "new hire buddy" system. That buddy should shadow you during your first week, take you out to lunch, and help you adapt to your new environment.
Schedule time with your manager. Many employers have formalized mentoring programs, which is akin more to a coach than a manager. This is essential for growth in your new role.
Finally, relax, observe, and listen more than you speak. Remember they hired you because of your relevant background and experience - and they want you on their team.
Cathleen Graham is SVP of HR and recruiting at Ruder Finn.
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