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ZEPHYRA's avatar

Ever been in a job where you were thrown in at the deep end when you started? How did you cope?

Asked by ZEPHYRA (20162points) July 22nd, 2014

Have you ever been put somewhere where you did not have some experience and you had to either swim or sink? How did you manage? Did you get any guidance? Did you drop everything and leave?

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12 Answers

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Yes and it seems to happen a little too often. Boomers retire an we are expected to do their work without having trained with them ahead of time. This also without additional resources and additional pay. GenX and the millenials get shit on yet again. We do the best we can, prioritize and frankly some of the work simply will not get done.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Many times. When I was hired as a customer service specialist at CellOne, it was a newly created position. I had some help, via phone calls, but for the most part I had to figure it out myself.

When I started my own business I was on a HUGE learning curve. Not sure how we survived my mis steps during that first year!

Pazza's avatar

Started my apprentiship:
In at the deep end learning to turn mill and fabricate. (17 years old)

Went into a design office to finish my apprentiship:
In at the deep end learning autocad and how to design industrial equipment.

Finished my apprentiship:
In at the deep end, got made redundant, was ready to recieve a child and was trying to buy a house. (22 years old)

Got a job 3 days later,
Moved into house,
Two weeks later first daughter arrived…...

12 months later moved out, house repossessed, banned from seeing daughter, started court proceedings to get access…...

9 months later, CSA taking most of disposable income,
Took a pay cut and went from the design office to working in a fabricators shop and maintaining various items of equipment. (steep learning curve but happy as a pig in shit getting my hands dirty and with more money in my pocket)

Anyhoo, that was the first 6 years of my working life.
Fastforward, Im 40 next year, and have continued my steep learning curve with 3 more kids, the oldest now 17 an a half and !!in a seriously relationship!!....... and I’ve recently just learnt on the job 3D cad and loving it.

To summerise, my who’l home life and working life has been one big steep in at the deep end learning curve. Personally I think it brings you on quicker (at least for me anyhoo).

Life is about managing risks, physical, emotional and financial.
An like alfred said to master wayne….“why do we fall sir?...... so that we can learn to pick ourselves up”!

(thats my second movie quote tonight….... hope its not a personal trend…....)

Oh ye…..
And theres generally always help along the way. So long as youre not too afraid to ask.

Dutchess_III's avatar

How did taking a pay cut mean more money in your pocket @Pazza?

Pazza's avatar

CSA = child support agency (UK)
they calculate how much child support you contribute by how much you earn.
So it was just a quirk of the calculation that I ended up with more money in my pocket at the end of the month.

I took the paycut only because the job stress didnt justify how much I was being paid, less the CSA contribution, so when I moved jobs, I had another steep learning curve with my new responsibilities, but I had less work stress, and enjoyed the work more. It was just a case of sitting down with my own thoughts and opinions, and coming to a conclusion of what was best for me in the long run.

Fortunately, everything panned out in the end.
My mum has a saying which rings true to me which I’m now very fond of:
“it’l all come out in the wash”

A guy I’ve work with many times over the years used to jokingly say:
“if things don’t change, they’l stay the same”

The point of that one being to me, the only one who can really change the direction of your life, is you. So if youre not happy, sit down with your thoughts and feelings and try and come up with the best solution, and then make an effort to follow that new path.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@ZEPHYRA Yes! In 2002, I was hired by a CPA firm to do a job that I couldn’t do. I had absolutely none of the knowledge or experience needed for “my” position. I never misrepresented myself during the interview process; the people involved had a need to fill, so they simply reinvented me and assigned nonsexist skills and talents. My first day on the job, I was stunned when I found out what I’d been hired to do.

For reasons that are too complicated and boring to describe, I couldn’t walk away. I was stuck. Outside of my normal work schedule, I spent a tremendous number of hours – perhaps another 40 or 50 per week – reading, studying, and learning. During the workday, I faked it’ evenings and weekends, I got up to speed and quickly excelled.

Flash forward 6–½ years… The partners at this firm were still as stupid and clueless as they’d been on the day of my hiring. After so long, I was in a good position to put my miserable job, and the idiots running the firm, behind me. I finally left.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

@SadieMartinPaul did all that not affect your mental and physical health plus your relationships with your family/friends?

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Yes. I started off by talking to key stakeholders about what they wanted me to achieve. I also spoke to the staff I had to supervise to evaluate how they were feeling, their motivation and problems they’d identified. In other words, I started off by trying to analyse where I was starting from, what support I had and what the priorities should be.

Then I set up priorities to focus on and broke the very big tasks into smaller chunks, and those smaller chunks into even smaller chunks.

Find mentors. People who work in your organisation that you can use as a sounding board for your ideas, get any staff you’re going to have to supervise on side (this could take time), seek advice and help from mentors/supporters if you’re struggling. Document what you’re doing – so you can see your own progress and so you can show those above you the process you’ve undertaken.

Ignore the voice in your head that tells you you’re in too deep and can’t do this work. If you break it into smaller parts and focus on each priority item and don’t try to do everything at once, you can do it. Success is about being able to identify the most important objectives/goals and being able to focus on each of them as required. Multitasking is good and you’ll need to do that, but don’t spread yourself too thin. Be realistic with your bosses about what you can do and how long it will take you. Promise less, deliver more.

I just noticed your comment above and if you’re taking on a big task it will impact on your family and friends. Put time for them in your calendar. Being organised is essential. I like to use a site called Kanban Flow and apps such as Any-Do to help keep track of my work. You need to factor in time for family and friends. That’s about your own mental health and ensuring they don’t feel neglected. Put it in your calendar. Don’t leave it to chance. If you do, you’ll forget and they will feel neglected. Put reminders to call your partner, your mum, to visit a friend etc. in your calendar and to-do list. Put in times to go for a walk or do some exercise, go to the cinema or do some things for your own relaxation. You have to stay healthy to be able to achieve your goals.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit thanks for an enlightening answer.

tinyfaery's avatar

Fake it till you make it. Ask questions.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@ZEPHYRA “did all that not affect your mental and physical health plus your relationships with your family/friends?”

Yes, it took a serious toll. I was miserable and often physically ill. Every day at that place, I literally felt sick to my stomach.

CWMcCall's avatar

Yes. My first day on the job was at a trade show with no prior training at all. I am good on my feet and survived the trade show and was top salesman every year after that.

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