10 tips on how to prepare for your first day at a new job
First of all, big congratulations on landing that new job!
You’ve aced your interview and now it’s time to focus on acing
your first day on the job and making a great impression on
your new employer and colleagues.
Here are 10 tips on how to prepare for your first day at a
1. Tie up loose ends at your current job
Make sure that before you leave your current job, you’ve worked out your required notice period, properly handed over tasks and assisted with training whoever is to fill your position. When you start your new job, the last thing you want are constant phone calls from your former employer or colleagues asking questions about your previous tasks. Worse even… your new employer possibly receiving a call from your former boss about what a bad state you left your post in.
2. Know when and what time you start on the new job
Find out from whoever conducted your interview, or the person you’ve been liaising with, the exact date you are commencing your new employment, and what time you should report for duty. Being late on your first day, or not pitching at all, will not reflect positively on you as an employee.
3. Take a test drive to your new workplace
To make sure you won’t be late on your first day by getting stuck in traffic or lost on the way to your new workplace, do a few tests drives before you start, during the week, at the time you would expect to start travelling to work. This way you can learn what the quickest route to your new workplace is.
4. Find out who you should report to and where
Avoid looking “lost” on your first day. Find out beforehand, where you will be able to park your car, the name of the person you need to report to and at which office building.
5. Dress appropriately
Each company has its own culture and dress etiquette. Try and spy it out while you go for your interview(s). However, if unsure, rather dress smart and corporate for your first day, or as you did for your interview. It’s better to be overdressed than underdressed.
6. Pack lunch
You can’t be sure how your first day will go. You’ll probably be busy meeting a lot of your new colleagues, doing training, getting to know the premises. Chances of having your usual “lunch hour” or slipping out somewhere to buy lunch will most likely be slim. Do yourself a favour and avoid passing out from hunger and pack a lunchbox that you can have on-the-go or whenever you have a spare moment.
7. Check your attitude
Confidence probably helped you get the job, but just make sure you don’t come across as too confident or arrogant on your first day. Tone it down a bit. Listen more than what you speak, be friendly and subservient in your attitude and be careful of making comments or jokes that could offend your new colleagues or reflect negatively on you.
8. Take notes
Your first day will most likely be “information overload”. Take a notepad and pen with wherever your new colleagues take you and jot down most of what they tell you. For example what your new tasks are, computer programs you’ll have to use and how, even silly things like where the kitchen is, or where you can find stationary. You’ll be glad later when you struggle to remember everything and don’t have to ask your new colleagues to repeat themselves.
9. Be informed about your new company
Before you start, do some research and learn as much as you can about your new company, its history, culture, achievements, projections, management etc. Remember, “Google” is your friend! This knowledge will not only impress your new colleagues and boss, but help you adapt into your new job quicker and play a vital role in your new team.
10. Get on the same page as your new supervisor
On your first day, grab the opportunity to have a one-on-one meeting with your new supervisor. Find out from him/her exactly what is expected of you in your new job, what your specific tasks and KPI’s are, their goals and how you can contribute to achieving these. This will eliminate the possibility of miscommunication and help you perform fantastically in your new job!