New on the Job and Have Extra Time to Kill?

When you first start a job, you may be anxious to prove that you’ve earned your spot and want to work hard to earn more responsibility. You might even find that you complete your initial tasks quickly and have a lot of spare time on your hands. When that happens, what should you do? Do you sit back and wait for your next project, slow down your pace so it takes you longer to finish, or ask for something new to do? If you ever find yourself in this situation, here are three ways you can effectively use your time at work and prove yourself at your new job.

Offer to help others. If you have some extra time here and there but aren’t consistently without work to do, start by asking if your teammates need help when you find yourself between assignments. You may not know all of the details of the project they’re working on, but you can help out with other tasks, such as filing, answering the phone, or assisting customers, which will give them more time to work on their bigger projects.

Ask for more responsibilities. If you constantly find yourself with extra time on your hands and you’re already comfortable with your initial projects, it may be time to ask for more responsibility. Talk to your supervisor about other tasks or assignments that you could take on as your own. Make sure to discuss how much time you could devote to a new project, what skills you could develop or improve on, and how the team could benefit from you taking on new projects.

Study up. If you’re not quite ready for a new responsibility and your co-workers don’t always have work to share, use your spare time to increase your knowledge of the company and industry you’re working in. If you have access to the internet, you can research the latest news on your company. You can also participate in training the company offers. Learn as much as you can, and pick up as many skills as possible that will help you in your day-to-day job and give you an edge over your competition.

Starting a new job is exciting, but the excitement can quickly wear off if you’re bored or not stimulated at work. Use your enthusiasm to help you improve your skills and further your knowledge by using the most of your downtime at your new job. Don’t waste your time – it will pay off when you earn the respect of your team.

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