Having a new boss is not necessarily a problem. Both when you change jobs and when your boss changes on you, you have the advantage of a clean slate.
Here are a few ideas on how to start off on the right foot with your new boss:
1. Do not listen to rumors.
It is very tempting to go around and search for opinions on your future boss. But, unless he/she really is a difficult person, confirmed by some sort of an authority, you should not give into any subjective talks. It will either embarrass you later on when your own experience with that person will prove the opposite, or it will even hurt your own career if you indulge in subjectivism that gets to his/her ears. So, except confirmed bad cases, limit yourself to listening and do not share any of the news heard from others. In other words, don’t gossip! You will have plenty of time to make your own opinion when he/she’ll be around.
2. Be on your toes for a while
Do not pick the first day with a new boss to call in sick without a reason (not saying that you would but if tempted, stay away from it). Don’t leave work very early or spend a luxurious two and a half hours on your lunch break. Nor should you stay in late, he will think you are trying to impress him. Instead, great him politely, use some appropriate “friend signals” and have a as normal of a working day as possible.
You might want to (re)brand yourself as what you want to be known for. More details on that will follow in a different post.
3. Check your work twice
Just like when you start a new job, remember that this person doesn’t know you, for better or for worse. So you will need to prove yourself all over again from the quality of your work to the type of person you are. So make sure to show only your good parts at the beginning. After all, this might be the big break you were waiting for.
For the same reason, even if you don’t have the time, give extra care to your work for his first two-three months. They say you only get one chance to make a first impression for a reason.
4. Don’t be extra available
There are two reasons for that. One, he might get used to it and assume you are to be there all the time or give you more work than you can carry. Two, he might actually think you’re just trying to impress him and chose not to trust you in the future.
And don’t compliment him more than you would anyone else! He will surely think you’re buttering him up.
5. Don’t claim the moon
Do not ask to change files or to get a pay raise in his first days. Wait for a formal performance review instead. But if you are asked about it, give your unbiased opinion and show what added value you can bring to the files you are interested in.
If you really hate your job, wait for a couple of weeks and then ask him for a meeting. Chances are, most bosses will anyway want to have a chat with all their staff at the beginning of their assignment so you might get that opportunity anyway.