Congratulations, you got hired! As the first day of the new job is approaching, it is only natural to feel a little more nervous the closer the starting date gets. In this blogpost, we’d like to present you some dos and don’ts for your first day at the new job that’ll help you to get through the day and leave a good first impression!
Prepare how you present yourself
On your first day you will – depending on the size of the company/team you’re going to be working with– most likely meat a lot of new faces and all of them want to get to know you. Describing yourself doesn’t sound like a challenge at first, but have you ever actually tried to do that? Name, age and hometown comes easy, but when it comes to interests, previous jobs, education, experience or hobbies it already gets a bitmore tricky. Therefore, it could be helpful to figure out beforehand how to sum up your story and what brought you there in just a few sentences.
Listen & Observe
Everything will be new: The people, the place, the tasks, the methods, the atmosphere. On your first day, you should really focus on all these new impressions. Listen to what your manager, boss and your co-workers explain to you, be attentive and observe what is going on around you. Every office has its own social structures, sense of humour, routines, etc. Some you will be able to identify quite early, for some it might take a while. Nevertheless, it is definitely a good idea to try to soak up as much as possible on your first day in order to understand, adapt and integrate.
Part of the listening process is asking questions. Whenever something seems unclear, ask. Nobody will mind you asking questions, not even if you ask the same question twice or even three times. Naturally, you won’t be able to remember everything, as the new day is full of new information and impressions and your new colleagues and managers will understand. Through asking questions, you also avoid future mistakes, by getting the clarity you need straight away.
Be 100% present
Make sure to sleep enough the night before, plan in enough time in the morning and eat enough for breakfast. With a good night’s sleep and sufficient nutrition, you’ll get through the day a lot easier. Also, try to stay away from distractions such as your phone and social media. Use the day to learn as much as you can – it’ll make the following days a lot easier.
Accept lunch invites
Do your co-workers want to eat lunch with you? Perfect! So far everyone only got to know you, but now it’s your turn to get to know the others! Spending the lunch break together is a great way to engage in more casual conversations beyond everything job-related. Make sure to ask a lot of questions and get to know your co-workers, maybe even find out who you will work with more closely and make some new friends.
Probably the most important thing to remember is your co-workers’ names. It can be quite challenging, but it’ll leave them with a very good impression of you and it’ll make getting along a lot easier for you.
Don’t be shy
Although it might be difficult for some, try to be outgoing. If you’re usually not the extroverted type – fake it til you make it! Say hello and introduce yourself to as many people as possible and you will see that everyone is going to be happy to have you there as a new member of the team.
Don’t try too hard
You are already hired, so don’t have to try to impress anyone. Be yourself, take everything at your pace, ask questions, listen, be attentive and that is going to be more than enough on your first day. It is tempting to overachieve in the beginning, when motivation and energy levels are high, but rather focus on really understanding the company, their goals, how they work and eventually, you’ll be noted as an important and hard-working part of the team.
Don’t talk negatively about your old job
This is a trap many new employees tend to fall for: while finding words of praise for the new job seems easy, it often feels just as easy to complain about things that annoyed you about your old job. By avoiding doing that, you will show your co-workers that you left hat job behind and that you are ready for new, exciting tasks in your new job and that you start with a positive outlook for the future.
Remember that your first day of work will to an extent set the tone for the coming days, maybe even weeks or months. Try to stay positive and don’t let negative thoughts, doubts or opinions take over – focus on the good, there is probably a lot more of that to focus on anyways!
That being said, just remember: it’s only your first day. You don’t need to be perfect and you don’t need to do everything. You will grow and evolve and gather a lot of new experiences, but that takes time. Just be prepared and expect the best. A positive attitude and some patience with yourself and others is probably the most important thing to bring on your first day.