What to Do When Your New Job Wasn’t What You Were Expecting

Sometimes things don’t turn out as planned. This can be especially difficult when new job isn’t what you thought it would be. Are you stuck? Should you quit? What’s your best plan of action?

Don’t Overreact

Even if you are frustrated or angry, take a deep breath and step back. First days and first weeks can be rocky under the best of circumstances. You may need several months before you feel comfortable in your new position. Or, the company may require you to complete training before you take on full responsibilities. Avoid making snap judgments you may regret. Many people have stories about bad first days at, what turned out to be, otherwise wonderful jobs.

Identify the Problem

The next step is to figure out what went wrong. Were you deliberately deceived? Was the job description inaccurate? Are you over or underqualified? Was the onboarding process poor or nonexistent? Once you have addressed these questions, you’ll have a better idea of how to act. For example, if the organization promised you one position and gave you something else (bait-and-switch), your best bet is to move on. However, if new employee orientation was terrible but you are starting to fit in, you may want to give the job another chance.

Schedule a Meeting With Your Boss

Once you have identified the issues, talk with your boss. This shouldn’t be a five-minute conversation in the hallway. Instead, set up an official time and place to meet. Bring along a printed copy of the job description so you can refer to this document. Don’t accuse, rather ask your boss to clarify expectations. If your duties are significantly different than those outlined, has something changed? If you feel overwhelmed, is additional support available? If you are being underutilized, could they bring your up to speed faster? And, if your boss is dismissive or unwilling to speak with you, this is a clear indicator you are in the wrong place.

Weigh Your Options

If you decide to leave, you don’t want look like a job hopper or find yourself unemployed, so proceed with caution. This time around, be more thoughtful with your employment search. Research companies and ask insightful questions during interviews. In addition, be prepared to explain why you are out looking again so quickly. Say something like, “The role wasn’t a good fit. I’ve learned to do my homework more thoroughly and I am excited to apply my skills to this opportunity.” On the other hand, if you do want to stick it out, be sure to reevaluate your decision after a few months. You may discover you are glad you stayed, but if not, you still need an exit plan.

Are You in the Market for a New Job?

If you know you should find a different position, but the idea of starting your job search over makes you queasy, don’t worry. Arkansas’s FirstStaff is here for you. Our professional recruiters can match your skills and goals to the right opportunity. Learn more about the benefits of working with us today!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *