5 ways to make your first 90 days in a new tech job count

From the Career Conversations Series with Jean, Founder of Exaltitude
January 24, 2023
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Whether you're a recent graduate or have been in your tech career for a while, the first 90 days in a new job are crucial. This is when you'll make the biggest impact on your career and set yourself up for success. The first 90 days in a new job are so important because it's the time when you're getting to know the business, the team, and the technology. It's also a time when you're trying to establish yourself and show your value to the new employer. If you can make a good impression as a new hire during this time, it'll set you up for success in your career. In this blog post, we will discuss how to make the most of your first time in a new tech job!

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Get to know the company's key stakeholders

The first step to making your first 90 days count is to get to know the company's key stakeholders. Who is the managing director or manager? These people will be the decision-makers at the company and who you need to impress to be successful. Get to know their names, their faces, and what they do at the company.

How do you identify the stakeholders?

First, look up the org chart. This will give you a good idea of who reports to whom and who has the most authority. Then go out to talk to other people. They'll be able to give you a good idea of who the decision-makers are and how to best impress them.

Once you've identified them, learn more about them. What are their goals and objectives? What projects are they working on? What do they care about? The more you know, the better you'll be able to impress them and also learn more about the company's agenda and company culture.

Make friends with everyone on the team

This includes the people you work with as well as the people you don't work with. Get to know them and what they do. Find out what they're working on and ask questions about their projects. Are there other new hires? Get to know them too!

If you can make friends with everyone, it'll make your job a lot easier and more enjoyable.


If you go into the office, you can invite your co-workers out for lunch, coffee, or drinks after work. Or you can join social committees and attend company events. The more people you know, the better!

If you don't go into the office, find out when other people go into the office. Try to go into the office on a regular basis to make sure you're getting face time with people. It takes time and investment to build relationships.


If you work remotely, there are still ways to connect with your colleagues. You can join online communities and forums related to your company or industry. Send a message on Slack or LinkedIn, or join internal groups. Ask for a quick zoom call to introduce yourself.

Not sure what to say?

Here are some ways to start a conversation:

"Hey, I'm new! I don't know anyone yet. Can I buy you a coffee?"

"I'm just looking to connect with people and learn more about what they're working on. Would you be available for a zoom call? Here is my availability."

Ask questions

Don't assume things will be the same as your last company. Ask questions to learn and also to show that you're interested in your work and others.

But you want to ask smart questions. The point isn't to come across as clueless or interrogate others. Do your research first to ask thoughtful, insightful questions. Use questions to learn more about the organization and your work.

Here are some examples of smart questions to ask:

"Can you tell me more about the culture?"

"What are the team's goals or priorities?"

"What projects are you working on right now?"

Consider ending every meeting with this question -

"I'm trying to get to know new people. Do you have any advice about who I should talk to?"

Observe and listen

Be an active listener and observer. This means paying attention to the things people say and do and also noting the things that are left unsaid.

For example, you might notice that your colleagues always talk about their personal lives. This could be a cue that they're looking for friends, and it would be okay to ask them about their weekend plans or hobbies.

Observe how your manager communicates with their direct reports. Do they prefer to communicate via email, in person, or through a chat tool? Do they like to be cc'd on everything? Do they like lots of details or just the big picture?

The more you know about how people communicate, the better you'll be able to communicate with them.

Every organization has its own culture, so learn the unspoken rules by paying attention and observing.

Save those big ideas for later

New employees often get excited and want to make their mark. You want to show your fresh perspective to others. But take the time to learn about the process and the culture before you try to change the status quo.

If you have big proposals, write them down and save them for later. Once you've been in the new role for a while, you'll have a better understanding of how to make your suggestions a reality.

Give some credit to people who've been there longer. There might be a reason for most things.

Chances are there are people who've been there longer than you probably have thought about it too.

Consider saving your big suggestions for at least the first three months.

First 10-30-60-90 day goals for the new job

Develop a game plan for yourself.

First 10 days:

Focus on the onboarding process and getting to know the company in your first two weeks. Meet the new colleagues, the new manager, and other teams. Get yourself acclimated to the new role. This is when people are the most supportive and available to help. And this is when people will develop their perspective on who you are. Set the right tone by being open and curious.

30 days:

The first month is when you should get a feel for the work you'll be doing. You're still learning, so ask questions. Take advantage of newbie status.

You should go for quick wins and work on completing small tasks. Looks for projects that utilize your skills. This is also a good time to think about what you want to achieve in your first few months.

Also, look for professional development opportunities to learn more about your field and improve your skills.

60 days:

This is when you should have a pretty good understanding of the work you'll be doing and how others operate. You should also have built relationships with co-workers.

You can take on more responsibility and work on projects that are outside of your normal scope. Show your value and what you can contribute to the team.

90 days:

By now, you should be in a good groove with work and have a good understanding of your team's culture. You should also have made progress in your goals. This is a good time to think about your long-term goals and your future.

Set up a meeting with your manager to discuss your goals and what positive impact you've accomplished so far. This is also a good time to set future expectations and ask for feedback.


The first 90 days in a new tech job are crucial for setting the tone for the rest of your time with the organization. Use these tips to make the most of it!

Do your research, observe, save big ideas for later, and set up a meeting with your manager to discuss your progress. By following these tips, you'll be on your way to a great first year in your new tech job.

But also, don't forget to celebrate your early wins!

If you’re interested in more lessons on career development, follow Exaltitude on LinkedIn for upcoming Career Conversation workshops.

Exaltitude newsletter is packed with advice for navigating your engineering career journey successfully. Sign up to stay tuned!

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