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Firstly, if you’re reading this because you’re about to start a new position, congratulations!
It’s normal to be feeling a myriad of emotions before starting a role. Nerves and excitement take over, as anticipation sets in for the first day. However, the main thing to remember is that the hardest part is over, now all you need to do is be yourself and put your best foot forward.
You’ll want to build rapport with your colleagues and reassure your manager that they’ve made the right decision to hire you. The first day is the perfect time to hit the ground running, so here are some tips to help you settle into your new job.
Remember when you were younger and you prepared for your first day of school the night before, by putting out your clothes, organising your lunch, and packing your bag? Treat your first day of work the same way. Being prepared will help you relax in the morning and save you from unnecessary stress.
You should pick out your clothes the night before so you can spend time deciding which is the most appropriate outfit to wear. In terms of your attire, take the conservative approach if you’re unsure, or wear something similar to what you wore in the interview. As well as ensuring you’re dressed professionally, this also allows you to relax in the morning as everything is ready and waiting.
It would be easy to pack your lunch the night before, albeit for the first day, we advise not packing your lunch at all. Treat your lunch break as an opportunity to socialise and get to know people better. Go out for lunch with your new teammates. If you’re lucky, your manager might even take you out to lunch so that you can get to know everyone better.
The first day can be a bit overwhelming. You’ll be meeting new people and introducing yourself over and over again. Prepare your small talk when introducing yourself, including where you were before you took this job and what your role involved. Try not to sound rehearsed, however it is helpful to have an idea of what you could say. When making conversation with your new teammates, it might get a little awkward, so you should think of some questions or topics to avoid those dreaded silences.
You don’t want to be a zombie on the first day of your new job. You will likely be taking in and digesting a lot of information, so you’ll want to be sharp and alert. The best way to do this is to try and switch off early and get at least 8 hours of sleep.
Punctuality is important. When determining your commute, you should aim to be in the parking lot roughly 15-30 minutes before your start time. This way, you can give yourself some time to unwind in the car, grab a cup of coffee, and be able to walk through the door 5-10 minutes before your start time. This not only demonstrates that you are punctual but highlights your commitment to the job and shows that you are likely to go above and beyond for the job.
When you’re introduced to someone, make sure you use their name in conversation. This is a great technique to use when trying to remember someone’s name. Talk to as many people as you can and make it clear that you’re keen to meet and introduce yourself to as many people as possible. Being shy or selective with who you speak to may give people a bad impression and potentially rub people up the wrong way.
Just because you know what your new boss or colleague is talking about doesn’t mean you won’t learn something new from what they have to say. Be willing to learn new things and pay attention to what your new boss and co-workers have to say. Feel free to add to the discussion but don’t feel that you must show off. You’ve passed your interview, so your manager clearly thinks believes you’re more than capable of doing the job.
On your first day, take some initiative and jump into your position head-on. As the new employee, you’re still establishing your reputation and if you get a head start on your work, it will start you on the right foot. If you get an offer to work on a project outside of your job description, try it. This will show your boss that you are versatile and willing to learn, which are impressive qualities.
These are just a few things to think about when heading into your first day that may just make the experience a bit easier.
Good luck and let us know how you get on.
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