How to Keep a Job in 90 Days

by Zachary Dodson

19 January, 2016

Oh hey. My name is Zachary. About three months ago, I left the bourbon-soaked bluegrass of Kentucky and joined The Arland Group as a Content Specialist here in St. Louis.

In that time, I’ve studied the wonders of toasted ravioli, denounced provel as a cheese, paid $8.50 for a single bottle of Budweiser at a Cardinals game, and—finally—pushed out some great work with talented people.

When I first started, I worked to make my mark as a TAG team member. Starting a new job is a challenge. You have new co-workers, a new culture and an overwhelming pressure to get it right. Three things I did to overcome that challenge and feel positive about my company and my work: Learn, Go and Believe.

Learn. 

People here are smart. They’re driven, they’re industry-tested, and their GIF game is on point. So, I learned to listen and learn. I asked questions and I started conversations when I could. I did everything I could to figure out where I belong within TAG and how I could contribute to our culture. Don’t expect the company to slow down for you. Learn as much as you can, and then get to work—which brings me to my next point.

Go.

I started this job with everything to prove, and what felt like nothing to lose. I was ready to show people what I could bring to the table. I said ‘yes’ to everything that came across my plate. New project comes down the pipeline? Offer to take a shot at it. Company needs someone in Dallas for a day? Go. Do more than is expected of you. People want to work with people who give a damn. In the first 90 days of a job, you have to give that damn time and time again.

Believe. 

Coming to The Arland Group, and St. Louis in general, was a big transition for me—and one I almost didn’t make. Transitions have that way of making you cast doubt on yourself. I started to look at my work with more uncertainty. It wasn’t until I nailed my first project that the wheels started turning. Looking back, I wish I had come in with a bit more assurance. I’ve since learned to believe in my work and fight for it when necessary. I may be wrong sometimes, but I worry about it less than I used to. I’d rather present my work with conviction than apathy.

My first 90 days at TAG seem like a blur. A good blur, though. I did more in those days than I could have ever expected. I’ve brainstormed new creative concepts and written countless words to build compelling brands. I’ve done work I can be proud of.

Here’s to 90 more.