Starting a new job can be daunting, but that very first day is your best chance to make a great first impression and get off on the right foot with your coworkers and superiors. Once you arrive at work for your first day, things can move pretty quickly, so take the time beforehand to think through your new job strategy.
Read through the new job tips outlined below. They will help to lower your anxiety about the first day of your new job, prepare you better for every eventuality, and leave you more able to absorb all the information you’ll be given, and remember important things like your coworkers’ names and where to find all the facilities you’ll need. There will be lots of new forms to fill in, safety orientations, new people to be introduced to. These new job tips will help you to stay alert on your first day and make the most of this opportunity to start as you mean to go on.
Tips for starting a new job
1. Learn about your new company’s culture in advance
The more you know about your company’s values and culture ahead of time, the better prepared you’ll be, and the more you’ll be able to focus on the things that really matter. Talk to the recruitment team or anyone else you know who already works at the company, to get a first-hand feel for the culture. Are the bosses greeted on a first-name basis? Is there an open-door policy? How relaxed are the rules around taking breaks?
2. Look the part
Turning up to your first day of work feeling over-or under-dressed is a sure-fire way to distract you from being your best on the first day of your new job. Research beforehand the company dress policy, look for photos of employees on LinkedIn, speak to the recruitment team for advice. Make sure you wear something comfortable so that you can focus fully on absorbing all the information you need to, while still being presentable. And, if you work in a creative industry, find out how you can dress in a way that suits your personality without overstepping any boundaries.
3. Plan your journey
The first day of a new job is not the moment to be driving down that busy highway for the first time in your life. Take the time to make a few trial journeys before your first day, whether you’re driving yourself by car, or taking the bus or train, or even walking. Travel at the time you would normally travel to work, and do it over several days, so you can get an accurate reading of the typical journey time. It’s always a good idea to plan to arrive fifteen minutes before your start time, to reduce your anxiety and make a good impression.
4. Make sure you’ve read all the appropriate joining materials
Read through all the onboarding or orientation materials ahead of time, so that on the first day of your new job, you can go straight to asking questions and discussing important points. Make sure you understand your new employer’s health insurance, vacation policy, sick policy, retirement plans, and remuneration. If you don’t receive some of the information until the first day of your new job, make time to read it as soon as you can.
5. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Some people worry that asking questions can sometimes give the impression a person doesn’t know enough or is good enough. The opposite is true. The more questions you ask, the more interested, enthusiastic, and engaged you appear. It also puts you in the position of having a lot more information at your disposal that will help you to settle in more quickly. Also, don’t be afraid to ask the same question a number of times. It’s better to fully understand the answer than it is to misunderstand then make a mistake.
6. Make a good impression with the right pen
Everything about you will be noticed on your first day, from your attitude to your outfit, to your choice of pen. The pen you choose to carry with you says a lot about your style, your approach, your work ethic, your taste, even your professionalism. If you want to project the image of a reliable, methodical, and serious professional, choose a solid, weighty, and robust stainless steel ballpoint pen. If you love the look of the stainless steel but find your hand prefers something lighter weight, try a ballpoint pen with a titanium or aluminum body. For real impact, choose the classic fountain pen in a contemporary casing. The historical nib points to an appreciation of style and integrity, while the modern design keeps you in touch, relevant and forward-looking.
7. Be friendly to everyone
Treat everyone you meet in the same way. Smile, introduce yourself, extend a handshake, make small conversation, express interest. Not everyone will be at your level of seniority but that doesn’t mean they can’t be helpful to you, or kind, or become a good friend in the future. Making friends early will help you to settle in more quickly. It will help you gain the trust of your coworkers and become a valuable part of the team.
8. End your first day in a positive way
While it’s important to make a good first impression at the beginning of your first day at your new job, it’s just as important to end the day on a positive note. You will probably be tired from absorbing lots of new information and memorizing everyone’s names, but make the time to say goodbye to your coworkers and thanks to them for helping you settle. Say you’re looking forward to seeing them all again in the morning and wish them a good night.
Starting a new job doesn’t have to be stressful. It can even be enjoyable, especially if you follow these new job tips. Good luck with your first day!