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#010 Fireside Fridays - Your 90 Day Post Job Offer Networking Guide


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How to set you up for promotion within the first 90 days of your new role:


Congratulations!


All your efforts and sacrifices have been worth it, and you got that offer.

You probably feel on top of the world…


…until the anxiety kicks in.


You realize that you've just got your foot in the door.


This was just the warm-up.


The real hard work starts now.


You have to perform in a high-pressure, high-stakes environment, which is not too well-known for its second chances.


The first 90 days in your new role can make or break your success in the banking world.


Here is a step-by-step guide on how to crush it:


1. Network like your career depends on it (because it does)

For the first 90 days, you are the new kid around the block.

Most people don’t realize this, but it’s a superpower.

Your “outside” point of view is highly valuable and allows you to ask questions seasoned employees won’t get away with…

…and you can ask anybody for a lunch meeting or coffee chat, regardless of their seniority.

Nobody is expecting the new joiner to ask for lunch with the country head.

Chances are high he will accept the request.

It’s like in a new relationship, everybody wants to show their best side.

Even if he declines, at least he heard your name and will value your courage.


2. Build a deep understanding of who calls the shots

The best way to start is by looking at the organizational chart of the company.

If you’ve done proper company research during your application process, many names should already sound familiar.

Now it’s about building a deep understanding of the reporting lines—the official ones and the unofficial ones.

What do I mean by that?

The official reporting line will probably look similar to this:

Team Member → Team Head → Market Head → Country Head → Regional Head → CEO

That’s your official reporting line.


That means if you are looking for a promotion, you have to pitch it to your team head.

The big question now is whether your team head also has the capabilities to decide about your promotion. You need to find out who calls the shots.


However, there’s a tricky part nobody tells you about.


Chances are good that your team head has the formal capabilities (on paper) to decide regarding your promotion, but in reality, he is just the messenger.


The real decision is made by someone else, e.g., the market head or country head.

Welcome to real life; this is called “office politics.”

You won’t find this information on an organizational chart, though.

So, how do you get this precious knowledge?

In any company, there are gatekeepers of this kind of informal information:

  • Executive assistants to the country head, market head, etc.

  • Personal assistants to high-performing senior employees

Now it’s time to build your A-Team—a list of formal decision-makers.


Make sure to add gatekeepers to it, to get an understanding of the informal decision-makers as well.

Get the name, email address, and phone number of your A-Team and put it into a spreadsheet.


3. Make one appointment a day

On your first day, you will probably have some kind of floor walk. Someone from your team or your designated “buddy” will show you around and introduce you to the different departments.

I know it’s overwhelming to remember all the office locations and names, but the easiest way to ask someone for lunch is when you “just bump into the person” in the hallway.

Furthermore, most large banks have an open-door policy, so you can just pass by and ask for lunch in person.

The more senior the person is, the harder it gets to catch them by chance—just send them a friendly email.

Here is a template:

Hi [Name],

I’m [Your Name] and just started as [Your Role] on [Your Team].

I’d be happy to go for lunch (or virtual coffee if remote) and learn more about your background and get a better understanding of what you are doing at [Company].

Best, [Your Name]


4. Be a fantastic conversation partner

How?

Ask good questions and let them talk. People love to talk about themselves and their achievements, and that’s why you are here anyway.

Start with an icebreaker like: How did you get into this position at [Company]?

That gets the conversation started, and you can warm up to each other.

Then add some value to the conversation by asking three simple questions:

  • What are you and your team working on?

  • What’s your biggest challenge, and how can my team help to make your life easier?

  • What’s the single best piece of advice you have for a new joiner?

5. Create your relationship journal

After your meeting, open your spreadsheet or get a notepad and document the answers.

Only applied knowledge is true knowledge; this is true for relationships too.

Therefore, you want to make sure to remember the conversation details.

Also, add personal items like:

  • Name of the dog

  • Hobbies and interests

  • Personal milestones and goals

  • etc.

The goal here is to find commonalities and topics to make it easy to enter a follow-up conversation.


6. Run an analysis

After having a handful of conversations, review the data

  • What are the most common challenges?

  • What are the major touchpoints for your team?

  • What were the best pieces of advice?

Come up with ideas, solutions, and action steps to tackle these challenges.


7. Start building goodwill

  • Pitch your team a possible solution to a problem of one of your A-Team members.

  • Take action on the advice you’ve received.

  • Document the outcome, get back to your A-Team, and present them the results.

Making the lives of your A-Team easier will build goodwill and strengthen your relationship with them while getting your name out there.

Establishing yourself as likable, easy to work with, and a problem solver within the first 90 days in your new role is the best way to set yourself up for your next promotion.


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Kevin Schwarzinger

Founder, ChimneyCapital

Author, World Explorer & Solopreneur




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