Dear Alice: I’ve just accepted a director level position in a new organization. What can I do to ensure my acceptance and success in this new role at a new place?

Alice Says: Congratulations! You have a great opportunity here to establish yourself as a valuable member of the organization!

Obviously you will meet first with each of your staff members to learn more about their roles, their challenges, and their aspirations. Your goal is to establish trust and earn their respect. Listening—really listening—is key. Humility and a willingness to learn, on your part, will go a long way toward helping each of them feel heard.

It’s also important to meet regularly and frequently with your new supervisor to establish how well you are acclimating. Asking questions and sharing progress will help you be seen as an effective member of the team.

Less obvious and critically important is to determine quickly who the stakeholders are for the work you now do. Meet with each of these individuals to learn how your area integrates with their desired outcomes. Understanding the impact your work has on theirs will be vital to building productive relationships with these stakeholders, and will also serve to guide you as you set your priorities and those of your team.

Doing these three things will put you well on your way to becoming known as a valuable new hire!