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How to Address Challenges during Your Probation Period

September 4, 2019

Have you recently started a new role and are unsure how to deal with some of the growing pains during your probation period? 

Your probation period is an interesting time.  You are meeting new people, learning new processes and ultimately seeing how you fit into your new firm.  Being patient and adaptive is critical during this time. 

Growing pains will be inevitable.  As the initial shine and lustre of your new job wears off you will start to realize that there are things you like and don’t like about your new role and firm.  This is very normal!  Some of these issues will be small and easy to work through.  However, some will be bigger – i.e. personality challenges, workflow challenges, or organizational challenges. 

If things do become extremely frustrating, to the point that you feel on the verge of quitting, you need to step back, breathe and assess the best course of action.  Remember the things you initially liked about this job.  Why were you attracted to it?  Will the current issues you are facing have a negative impact on your long-term career plans with this firm? 

If you cannot see a way around it, we suggest that you sit down with your superior (either your lawyer, office manager, or HR) and let them know how you are feeling.  Be sure to schedule a meeting with them. Do not spring this conversation upon them and do not have it in public.  In the meeting let them know the challenges you are experiencing. Remember, they may have no clue how things are going for you and may have even assumed things have been going well. 

Keep your meeting professional.  Do not cast blame or play a victim.  Ask them if there is anything that either you or they can do to alleviate the issue.  Most people we speak with feel that there is nothing that can be done to solve the issue.  However, sometimes the firm will be able to make the necessary changes to help you with the areas you are struggling with.  Other times, they won’t be, and you will need to adapt to the situation.  However, by having a conversation with your employer on the issue, you are at the very least allowing for the opportunity for issues to be rectified.

Also, be sure to establish an action plan.  Ask for regular meetings so the two of you can discuss how the issue is progressing.  Remember to be patient and see what can be done.  Also, ask yourself how much you can adapt to alleviate the issue. 

Thanks for reading!  If you have any questions regarding this topic or would like to discuss some of the challenges you are facing during your probation period and how to overcome them, be sure to contact us.

Happy Job Hunting and Good Luck!

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