3 ways to conquer imposter syndrome when starting a new role

07/08/2021

one orange standout boatIf you are going through a career transition it is quite likely at some point you may have had doubts about your successes and how they can transfer into a new role.  These feelings of self-doubt can emerge at any time during your career but are more common when onboarding into a new role.

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenonimpostorismfraud syndrome or the impostor experience) is a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their skills, talents, or accomplishments and has a persistent internalised fear of being exposed as a "fraud". Despite external evidence of their competence, those experiencing this phenomenon remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve all they have achieved. (Wikipedia).

Starting a new role may feel daunting and overwhelming, here are 3 ways to reduce fear and regain your confidence in your new job.

Identify quick wins

Rather than trying to achieve everything at once, aim for quick win to build confidence in yourself and your abilities. A quick win is defined as a new improvement that is visible, contributes to the organisation, and can be achieved quickly after starting your new role. Quick wins are usually secured in the first 90 days of starting a new job.

Make a list of your quick wins. Where do you feel you may add most value? What experience could you easily transfer into the new role?  A quick win is low risk and requires minimal expenditure. It could include engaging with stakeholders achieving buy in or taking the time to understand the business, systems and processes.

Understand any skills gaps!

Try to identify what is causing these feelings and use imposter syndrome to your advantage. It can be used positively to stretch yourself, build on your strengths and knowledge and practice continuous learning. Identifying any training needs or areas of development before you start may allow you to get up to speed quicker and demonstrate you are proactive. These needs could be in relation to systems, processes or industry knowledge, or there could be additional research to undertake before you start your new role. How can you acquire this information in advance? If you are moving into a new industry, identify key influencers or consider joining groups on LinkedIn to bring yourself up to date with industry news.

Look to your network; do you know anyone who has started a new role in the past 12 months? What advice could they offer? Also, there may be key people in your network who could mentor, buddy or support you within your first 6 months to help increase confidence or use as a sounding board.

Manage your expectations

Before you start your new role, it is important to take the time to understand exactly what it is that the organisation is trying to accomplish and your objectives. As a new hire this aspect of the onboarding process is very important, and the first 30 days should be focussed on learning as much about the organisation as possible. Use this time to also understand your Line Manager’s expectations of you and time frames. It is likely your expectations may be greater than theirs so having a transparent conversation about your objectives and priorities will be essential.  Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback; not only will improve your performance and increase motivation, but it demonstrates you are invested in personal growth. At the same time, understand that mistakes and setbacks are part of the process and are a learning curve in any new role.

Renovo is the UK’s leading outplacement and career transition specialist. We work with both organisations and individuals to support all their career transition requirements. If you would like to understand how Renovo can help you please call 0800 612 2011 or email info@renovo.uk.com

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