The Nebulousness of the New

As many of you know, there are a lot of challenges to being in a new position. Everyone’s still getting to know you, you’re getting to know your colleagues and the institution, and learning to understand your new students. However, sometimes there is an additional challenge of the “new”- being new in a newly created position. That was the challenge I faced the most this week.

The challenges of a new new role are compounded, just as you might expect with two uses of the word. As with any new position, you’re not always sure what to do. But with a new position, that can mean sometimes others don’t know what to do with you either. On days where my boss is out, or in meetings for most of the day, I find myself occasionally spinning in my proverbial (okay, sometimes literal) office chair, wondering “What do I do next? What am I supposed to be doing?”

I sought out answers from friends on Twitter who I knew were in the same position, and they affirmed me- sometimes that’s all you need, to know that your concerns and confusion is normal! But the most help I received was from a mentor and friend, who supervised staff members in new positions. He helped me see the situation from the same view that my supervisor may be, and told me how he worked with them.

Armed with a new perspective and the comfort that I’m not alone in my disorientation, I’m moving forward to make this position my own, and get the help I need to be a success.

Are any of you in newly created positions? What have your challenges been? How have you overcome, or are you overcoming, them?

Amma Marfo

Student Affairs - the First Years

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