Finding a new job means working with a new manager. It’s normal to feel a little nervous about both. Start building a great working relationship with your new manager by setting up a meeting to discuss expectations and working style preferences.

Here are a few questions to ask to help you get started.

Working and Reporting Style

  • How often would you like to meet with me?
  • Would you prefer that we communicate in person or by email?
  • How often would you like me to check in/touch base or report to you on what I’m doing?
  • Is there anyone you would like me to consult with on a day-to-day basis?
  • How would you prefer I deal with questions that come up? Should I contact you by email or should I save my questions for regularly scheduled meetings?

Your Role on the Team

  • What do you see as my role on this team?
  • What kinds of activities should I be prepared to participate in, in addition to my work assignment (e.g., team meetings, presentations, etc.)?
  • Can you give me a brief overview of how the team functions, lines of communication, collaboration, and so on?
  • What are the main expectations you have of me in terms of my contribution to your team?
  • What are your specific priorities for this team or this department?

Being Part of the Company

  • Are there other departments in the organization that we work closely with?
  • Strategically, what other areas of the company’s work should I consider besides the work of our immediate team?
  • Are there any larger background issues in the company I need to know about that might impact the work of this team (e.g. fiscal year-end, company merger, recent company news, new systems implementation, new policy implementation, government/legal issues, etc.)?

Asking these types of questions will help you to develop a solid foundation in your relationship with your new manager. Together, you will set expectations from the start, which will help avoid any confusion in your first few weeks and months at the company. This essential step will set you up for success.