Starting a new role often feels exhilarating. Excitement at a fresh page and mass of possibilities mixed with the anxiety of the unknown and making the right first impressions.

It can be exhausting too – names, faces and roles to remember, systems to get logged in to, the processes and quirks to discover and navigate, the pull between wanting to be immersed in the ways of the tribe you’re joining and feeling the need to show your value as quickly as you can.

Starting a new job doesn’t often feel as comfortable and safe as coming home. Returning to local government when I joined the User Centred Design team at Birmingham City Council yesterday did.

Yes, the excitement and anxiety were there but it also didn’t feel like a typical first day: it felt wonderfully familiar. Helped undoubtedly by an amazing team who gave the best welcome with fresh samosas and homemade cakes. My kind of people!

I’m already at the end of Day 2 so want to start collecting my thoughts over the coming weeks as I find myself facing down (another) first 100 days in local government. To help I’m using the HUSTLE + Hush New Job Coaching Cards and have already shuffled my pack into things which seem to fit best in months 1, 2 or 3.

I’ve picked 3 cards to set me off today (this post is mainly for me to capture and look back on but perhaps you – whoever you may be – can find inspiration for your own reflection).

3 words that describe how I want to feel at the end of my first 100 days

  • Energised – enthused by the possibilities with the confidence we can make things happen
  • Connected – with my team, with the organisation, with users, and with people across and around the sector
  • Content – as in happy and settled, but also at one with the content we’re creating and managing!

In this role I want to be…

Both a learner and a teacher, a leader and a follower, respectful and respected.

But mostly, I want to be both consistently adding value and connected to my purpose.

How do I want to feel on Sunday evenings?

Rested and raring to go.

I feel like the Sunday Scaries have been far too present recently and so if I can feel at peace about the working week ahead – whether it looks run-of-the-mill or full of challenges – then I’d be happy.

I hope it will feel more than that though. I hope I’ll feel all those things I picked out as wanting to feel at the end of 100 days – energised, connected and content. I’d love for those feelings to last way beyond my first 3 months and to just be the way it feels to be in this role, with this organisation.


If anyone else is just starting out in a new role (in or out of local government) I’d love to hear from you. And if you’re in LocalGov Digital (with or without the capitalisation) lets reconnect! You can find me in (most of) these places, or where I share this post.