You should be feeling excited about the new role, but you may also be experiencing some nerves. That’s totally normal, and hopefully they will subside fairly quickly. This guide will help you prepare well and make a good first impression.
- Prepare well in advance. Find out what time you need to arrive and who you should report to. Work out how you will get to work and leave plenty of time to do so. Dress appropriately for the role, but be prepared to wear slightly more formal clothing than you might usually wear as you’ll be introduced to lots of people on your first day. Find out what you can about the company and your new team in advance, and bring any documents you’ve been asked to provide.
- Arrive punctually and ready to learn. When you get there, find out where the key facilities are, such as toilets and the kitchen or canteen. It may take you a while to get your bearings, so be patient. Take detailed notes throughout the day so that you can refer back to them when your brain feels overloaded and you feel like you’ve forgotten everything! The more you note down, the fewer questions you’ll have to ask your line manager or colleagues down the line, but if there’s something you haven’t been told, don’t be afraid to ask.
- Be proactive. Find out what your role involves, and how to prioritise tasks. If you aren’t given much to do intially, ask if there’s anything you can do to help your team. You have most likely been employed to lighten other people’s loads, so be as proactive as you can without taking on too much too soon. They will appreciate it! Be prepared to step up to the plate if you’re offered new responsibilities.
- Get to know people. Make sure you smile and say hi as you pass people in the corridors or in the lift. Where appropriate, introduce yourself. Note down their names and job titles at an appropriate time so you remember key personnel. If you’re feeling nervous, ask people about their role to take the focus off you. If you really want to score some brownie points, find out how they like their tea or coffee (or squash!) and offer to make everyone a drink.
- Be sociable. If you’re invited out to lunch or for a drink after work, it’s a good idea to do so, even if you feel like running away. It’s at these times that you’ll really get to know what makes them tick, and how the company is run. Try to avoid gossip and criticism, as you will want to be a positive influence in your workplace.