The first day of a new job is one of the most important and the most nerve-racking. You’ll meet a lot of new people, make a lot of first impressions and have a lot of information thrown at you. Follow the tips below on how to survive your first day and make the best first impression.
Sleep is important! Make sure you’re getting plenty of rest before your first day to help you feel refreshed and energized for the day ahead. Experts say the body takes two weeks to adjust to a new sleep pattern, so if you’re switching from late nights to early mornings or vice versa, you’ll need to acclimate ahead of time.
Before you enter the new workplace, you’ll want to have done as much research as possible about your new company. You’ll want to know everything you can about the business and the key people before your first day.
Press sections on the company website might offer recent news, articles and even upcoming projects. Make sure to also check out their social media pages. LinkedIn is a great tool to help you recognize names and faces before you step foot into the office. If you want to be ahead of the game, email your supervisor a couple days before you start to ask if there’s anything you should look into before your first day. Even if they don’t have anything for you to prepare, they will most definitely appreciate the initiative.
Get there early
Is there construction on the highway? Is the subway out of service? Can you navigate to work if your phone or GPS stops working? You need to know the answers to all these questions to make sure you have a smooth first 15 minutes. It is always beneficial to do a “test run” of your commute before your first day. This will help you feel more comfortable about the route you’re taking and the time it takes for you to get there. It is always better to show up early rather than late.
Don’t be shy!
Take the initiative to introduce yourself to your new co-workers. Your boss may take you around to meet the office, but they may not have the opportunity to introduce you to everyone. Making the effort to be sociable will help you become more comfortable around your new team mates and in your new workplace. Remember, networking is also an important key for success!
Tip: If you forgot someone’s name – don’t panic! Relax and say something similar to “I apologize for forgetting your name, I’ve met about a hundred different people today!”
Don’t forget anything
If you carry a purse, bag or briefcase, pack it the night before and make sure you have everything. You might need your ID for security, your bank account number for direct deposit forms, an umbrella, a notebook, and anything else that is important to you for the day.
Tip: Create an item checklist the night before your first day.
You should always dress appropriately for your job. What you wear to the office plays a big part of the first impression you make. If you paid attention when you went for an interview you should know how dressed-up or casual the office is. If you interviewed on a Friday (possibly a casual Friday) or just aren’t sure, you should email your boss ahead of time to ask. You don’t want to show up in jeans when everyone else is wearing a suit. Overdressing is probably more acceptable than under dressing, in any case.
Silence your phone
You will be in meetings. Either with your boss, your team or even something bigger, and you have to be able to go 9 hours without answering your phone or a text. The world will keep spinning, we promise.
Ask questions and take notes
You are going to be receiving a whole lot of information on your first day, which may seem a bit overwhelming. There’s a lot to learn, from how the phone system works to regular meeting schedules. Make sure to ask as many questions as possible and most importantly, carry a notepad to write down all of your notes. These notes will be invaluable to you later! It will also save you from re-asking the same questions.
Be confident and excited
You were the best candidate for the job, so there’s not much to be nervous about on the first day/ Smile and let people know you look forward to working with them, either through words or actions, to make the best first impression you can. Remember, you landed this position and you have what it takes to succeed!
Find some wins
If you’re given any smaller tasks than can be completed on the first day, do them! Getting off to a quick start will make you feel more confident about the day and will confirm to the team that they hired the right person.
Don’t leave early
Make sure to stay until the end of the day. Even if your first day is slow, and you barely have any work, do not try to leave before the day is officially over. Also, make sure to check in with your boss before you head home!