On your first day at work, it’s important to make a good impression. In order to do that, you need to be prepared by dressing appropriately, understanding your responsibilities and behaving appropriately. Starting a new job can be intimidating but you can put yourself at ease if you know what to ask to accomplish your tasks.
Questions to Ask Before You Arrive
- What is the dress code? Wearing clothes that do not match your company’s environment will make you stand out in a negative view. Your appearance is the first thing your co-workers and boss will notice, so it’s important to understand if the environment is casual or formal; you don’t want your clothes to speak for you. Based on what you saw others wearing when you originally went in for an interview, you can infer what is acceptable.
- Is there a particular place I should park? Knowing ahead of time if there is an assigned parking lot or spot you should park in, will save you time looking for a place to park and prevent you from parking in a co-worker’s spot.
- Who will I be meeting when I arrive? It’s a sign of respect to know the name of who you’re meeting and since that person may be the one to go to with future questions, it’s a good idea to make a good first impression.
- Is there anything else I need to bring? At the interview, you showed you were qualified through your answers and your resume, but once you accepted the job, you now have to prove your capabilities. Ask if there is anything you should bring with you because some companies do not provide simple office supplies; they will appreciate that you’re thinking ahead.
Things to Do Before You Leave
- Check that you are in accordance with the dress code. Based on your line of work, your company may require casual or formal wear so dress accordingly. There’s more to a dress code than what you wear. These rules may not be explicitly listed in your company’s dress code policy but are unspoken rules such as proper grooming, covering tattoos and piercings. Based on what you saw everyone wearing when you went in for your interview, you can use your best judgment on what is appropriate for your work environment.
- Plan your commute so you arrive early. Being late isn’t a good first impression to make, so leave with plenty of time to spare to get to work. Once you have established your commute time, you can plan accordingly for the future.
- Pack your bags early with all of the necessary things. Instead of rushing in the morning, pack everything you need the night before when you have more time. It will help ensure you aren’t late to work.
- Double check the names of the people you will be meeting. Forgetting or calling someone the wrong name isn’t a great step forward to a quality first impression. Check your notes to know who you’re meeting and where at.
How You Should Behave
- Be social. By accepting lunch invitations from your co-workers, you’re taking an opportunity to get to know who works with you and establish working relationships. Being sociable and friendly with your co-workers makes everyone more comfortable when working together.
- Keep a positive tone and smile when you see your co-workers. Creating a friendly first impression is the first step to building friendships in the office.
- Be attentive during meetings and interactions. To learn how the company works, you need to listen and know that it will take time. Making eye contact and listening to what is being said is a sign of respect and shows you are interested.
- Be confident and relaxed. Starting a new job can be stressful but know everyone is aware you’re new. Asking questions isn’t a bad thing; it will show your co-workers you’re trying to learn how to accomplish tasks correctly.
How to Approach Your First Tasks
- Create small goals for yourself. This allows you to feel like you’re making strides towards completing tasks. It will also help you feel comfortable with your work.
- Ask questions. If there’s something that isn’t clear about a task or how things function, ask questions in order to clarify. Don’t waste time trying to figure something out that could be easily resolved by asking your co-worker.
- Keep notes. When you’re first starting off, it’s especially helpful to keep notes of task details so you can reduce the time spent asking for clarifications.
Your first day of work is easily manageable by staying organized and planning ahead. By asking questions and taking quality notes, you will make a good first impression and earn respect. Over time, you will be able to prove your dedication to the company and know how to properly ask for a raise based on what you have accomplished. Being dedicated to your work is important but you should also be rewarded for your hard work.