Summary of What to Do When You're New

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What to Do When You're New book summary


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Do you avoid people because you’ve forgotten their names? Do you take a friend with you to events so you’re assured of knowing someone? You won’t need to worry about such social anxiety if you follow this easy guide to handling introductions, remembering names and asking questions that lead to good conversations and great relationships. Keith Rollag offers straightforward, practical techniques to help you – as a newcomer – move past crippling anxiety about new situations. Although his directives are clear, he knows that changing your patterns of interaction isn’t easy. He offers commonsense, clear techniques you can use to overcome social anxiety, starting with using “reflection and practice” to change your emotional responses and move past fear. Rollag emphasizes strong, interpersonal skills but and warns against becoming too attached to the Internet and social media. getAbstract recommends his advice for navigating new jobs and relationships to anyone who ever feels nervous in a social setting.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to overcome the anxiety of being a newcomer,
  • How to introduce yourself and recall names and faces,
  • How to ask questions to build new relationships, and
  • How to use “reflection and practice” to become comfortable performing new skills in front of others.

About the Author

Organizational researcher and consultant Keith Rollag is associate professor of management and chairperson of the management division at Babson College. He writes for The New York Times.



“Being New”
To succeed, you need to keep learning new things. Whether you move to a strange city, change organizations, go back to school or adopt a new fitness regime, your happiness and success depend on how well you handle the fear of being the new person in a group.


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    Eric Jacques 1 year ago
    Good read, a ton of practical advice and something's that we often forget when starting a new job.

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