Moving to a new city/state/location to start your career can be an exciting and anxious. Your mobility itself may be the reason you are in this new opportunity. Over the past year I’ve moved twice to opposite sides of the country and the next 4 tips are things I’ve learned that have helped me not only adjust but adapt to my surroundings.
- Join your companies Employee Resource Group (ERG) to meet people who have similar background/interest as you. Most companies have established groups that seek to help connect and build relationships between employees. Examples of these groups are Young Professionals, Hispanic/LatinX, and LGBTQ+. Often these groups hold events weekly or monthly like networking event, professional development, and community engagement. Being actively involved helps you meet new people and help you get a better understanding of your new community. If your company or organization doesn’t have these groups it may be a great opportunity for you to unite the people around you over common interest or background.
- Try to spend time with your work group/team outside of normal office activities to be able to get to know them better. You’ll spend a large portion of your time in your new role with your team, so they can be a great resource to learn about your new area and introduce you to other people. Some people may not have the same hobbies or enjoy the same kind activities as you do but trying to grab coffee with them or have a team dinner can make the difference to build a better relationship with your team. Additionally, if getting to know the people around you better can help you improve at your job because the best resource is your network around you.
- Join your local organizations/club like Toastmasters to meet people outside of work and help your public speaking abilities. Being part of groups outside of work gives you a good balance to be able to meet people who have different interest than you. For example, being part of Toastmasters gives you the chance to hear about the interest of others and share content in a facilitated format. These groups can be something career related but joining an intermural sports team or photography club at your local recreation center all make it easier to build on what helps. Additionally, joining these groups can be a great way to pick up new skills. If you ever wanted to learn to paint or play an instrument this could be a great way to learn.
- Meet someone new every day. All previously mentioned content is a great way to put yourself in a situation to meet new people and start to build your new community. The highest contributing factor is your persistence and openness to meet new people. It is easier to not try than to try. Striving to meet someone and learn something about them that day is one step that you can take to show yourself you are starting to adapt and become part of your new community.
Being in a new location is a journey and the most important thing is to remember why you put yourself in this situation. For you it may a new job a change in scenery or a change in your life. Whatever reason you have stepping outside your comfort zone will help you long term. Living in this new place will introduce you to people you never thought you’d meet and add a perspective you never thought about.
Best of luck in enjoy your adventure!