I'm almost a month into my new job, and I feel like I should be settling in ... but I'm not. Things don't feel great sometimes, and I'm a little worried that this job is not a good fit for me. I've struggled with some major pain points in the engineering setup, I've struggled with how work is assigned, and I've struggled with knowing my place and feeling wanted on the team. I don't feel like my team has the same expectations for me as I have for myself, and when I run into a problem or difficulty, I'm not sure who to ask for help or even if I'm comfortable asking for help. I haven't been working on the projects I had hoped to work on, and while the project I'm currently working on is important, it's going more slowly than I had hoped, and I don't feel like I'm making a contribution to our user-facing product. I've been here for almost a month, and most days it feels like coming here was the wrong decision.
I want to try to make this work. I like the company, I like the people I work with, and I think overall this could be a great place for me to grow my career. But I need to make sure that I'm being challenged as an engineer and I can become comfortable here, which means I need to ask some hard questions. The main thing I need to do is figure out why I'm so uncomfortable. What was I expecting to find at this job that isn't there? What systems exist at the company that are causing me stress?
Once I've made these lists (which I've already started doing), I need to figure out what actions I need to take to myself feel more comfortable, and what topics I need to discuss with my manager and my team lead. I know there will be overlap, and I need to figure out the best way to approach that. For example, one thing that has been uncomfortable for me this last sprint is that I kept running out of work and didn't know what to take on next. I know that I need to be better about proactively reaching out to my team lead and PM to see what my next priority should be, but I also want to have a conversation with my team lead to ensure that our future sprints include enough work for me.
I also need to be realistic about the fact that there may not be a solution. I might try everything I can to help me feel comfortable, my manager and my team might do their best to help me feel welcome, but it still might not be enough. It is possible that this job is just not a good fit for me. That's just the way it goes sometimes. I know that if I do decide that this isn't the right fit, the company will support me (everyone I've spoken to has been very open about that), but I need to figure out how and when to make that decision. I don't want to stay in the wrong job for too long saying "but maybe things will get better soon". I want to set a hard deadline by which I want to have seen concrete improvement. If I hit that deadline and I don't feel like things have gotten better or I feel like things are not moving in the right direction, then I need to be ready to let go and move on to whatever is next for me.
I do hope that things work out. I know already that this is a great company with a great team, and my manager is very supportive and wants the team to do well and me to do well. I'm hoping that this is all still adjustment stress. I'm making a plan for how to make things better for myself, and I know that I need to communicate that plan to my manager and my team lead. I'm not expecting anything to get better right away, but I'm hoping that with open communication and a little bit of effort on both sides, things can move in the right direction. There are a lot of things to love about my new company, and I'm hoping that I can find a way to make this work and eventually feel comfortable being a productive part of the team.