Each kind of fruit has its own harvest-ready days in this season and many, noticeably,come to full readiness beginning mid-summer. Consider the “delicious time” of a career. Early harvest is a fortuitous time to stop and carefully examine the earliest produce of the first 30-60 days of a new job. For many employers, this is a “trial” period. Predictably, any kind of trouble in these days could mean loss of an entire harvest later.
Employers expect certain kinds and quality of results and development in workers within a specific time frame. Employees expect certain kinds and qualities of satisfaction and advancement in a specific time frame. There do exist situations in which the sampling of a worker’s produce is done way too early. Certain results/professional development need longer times. However, especially for workers in the lower tiers of the workplace terrace, the expert eye of a supervisor is often on-point.
As has been mentioned before there are expectations (new hire may or may not be told) already in place to be met. The 30-60-90 day plan from the employer’s viewpoint is intended to predict a potentially outstanding harvest or a productivity disaster (costs the company lost time and financial gain).
Employers want to know as early as possible whether or not to continue investing time and expertise (care, attention and fertilizer) in developing an employee.
Employees want to know as early as possible whether or not the workplace soil (opportunity for growth and learning) will support ongoing development.
Hopefully, the employee knows how she/he will be judged and has before accepting the offer presented the employer with a “preview”–the 30-60-90 day plan–the seed packet illustration of what kind of bloom to expect. In the garden and in careers certain questions have to be answered.
Here are the questions: Does the late summer sample show a potentially good harvest or a poor one? Is this tree/flower/worker going to produce a prize winner or an average bloom?
How do you know it’s mid-summer, June 21, in a career? How do you know it is Solstice?
Favor at work with supervisors and coworkers
Vibrant green finances: good salary, great perks, and fantastic benefits
Status symbols: cars, jewelry, season tickets to exclusive events
High regard as a producer: awards, plaques, honors, trophies and trips
High regard as a citizen in the community: owner of “ground beneath my bed”, leader of the “movers and shakers”, busy and constantly sought out
Enough to eat and to provide to others
Popularity: business in a growth phase, relationships/networks deep and wide
“All is well” in the soul
These are some of the manifestations of the abundant, verdant mid-summer in life and in a career. This is when Life spreads a joyous feast and we roll in her gracious lap, privileged to plunge both our whole hands in the deep cream and stuff ourselves silly.
I remember in the early days at my very first professional job when I was a new-hire just out of university. I haughtily gazed out of the painted-shut kitchen windows of my first rented apartment and dared dream of owning a condo on the East Side of Providence, Rhode Island with a view of the river. All was as it should be. I walked down the street from my good-salaried job at the end of working days to a lavishly appointed restaurant with the dark, medieval feel I prized and fearlessly ordered Black Angus steak cooked exactly the way I liked it as if I were a Tudor in exile.
Having inherited AAA credit from my mom, who was a homeowner, I observed how she managed the household’s money. That is why I had the awareness to save and my financial “pile” grew very well. However,only a few months later my fortune suddenly changed at work, and my “pile” shriveled like a fallen leaf. Nobody instructed me how to protect myself; nobody shared my sorrow; nobody caught me when I fell like a weevil-infested bud.
The cold and snow reminds us of winter, but the earth is warming. The light is brightening. No matter what day it is on the local wall calendar, if the distinct signs of career spring are present, then it is career St. Brighid’s Day. Hope and ambition’s fires take the kindling and leap into passionate life.
The beginning of career / job spring is the time spanning the end of pre-employment negotiations through the final “yes” handshake. The ink is stone dry on the agreement and the applicant morphs into new hire.
Several things are now top-of-the-list important but most important of all is the immediate application of the “First 100 days” plan. The First 100-days plan might be a note in the margin on an overall Life Management Plan, the master plan that embraces every aspect of living on the planet earth: career management, professional development, intellectual expansion, physical care, community relations and spiritual growth. It should be ready to be lifted right out of the general career marketing/management plan part of career management. (Once again, already well thought out and written down during career winter. This is another reason the work of winter is so important.)
A Cautionary tale
Around February, I can smell the change in the air, so when I get a “whiff” of spring (my sinuses never lie) and the sunlight slants a certain way, I check to see if the ground is soft enough to fertilize the roses. If it is, I fertilize with a pest repelling rose food that will feed the fast growing, hungry shoots. One year, I was too slow in doing this task and discovered pests already partying in the malformed rosebuds. I had to lop off an entire branch that year.
The “First 100 days plan” in a career is like the first fertilizer application to a prize winning rose. It is part of the work of spring.