How to make a good impression on your first day

Remember these tips for starting a new job

Starting a new job

Regardless of if it’s your first job or your tenth, or starting remotely or in the office, starting a new role is challenging. But by being armed with what steps you can typically expect, the transition can be a bit easier for you.

During your first few days, you will typically complete an induction. Ideally this will be a carefully crafted induction process that introduces you to relevant processes and procedures, the wider team, the specifics of your new role and the role’s importance within the context of the wider team and organisation.

However, it’s not only up to your new employer to provide you with a positive and effective beginning. When starting a new job, you can take some steps in your first week to help make a good impression.

Tips for starting a job at a new workplace

Here are a few tips you can follow to help transition into a new company.

Arrive early with a positive attitude

Arrive early on your first day and be prepared with everything you’ll need to get set up and hit the ground running.

Treat your first day, and week, in the position almost like the job interview. Try to demonstrate to your new boss that they made the right decision and present as professional, personable and knowledgeable.

Enthusiasm is important when starting a new job, as is displaying confidence. Change can be overwhelming, but try to display a can-do attitude from day one.

Lose any pre-conceived ideas

Don’t start a new job with pre-conceived ideas about the company, the industry or even your own role that might hinder your ability to learn new concepts. If your new job has elements of work that you’ve undertaken before, don’t assume that your tasks will be exactly the same.

Introduce yourself to colleagues

Your manager may provide a quick introduction to new colleagues, but with all the new things that you’re trying to process, it’s easy to forget names and job titles. Schedule a short meeting with each of your co-workers after these initial introductions so you can better understand their role, and how your new role might intersect, and to build connections with your new workmates.

If your new workplace operates a hybrid working arrangement, it can help to spend as much time in the office as possible in the beginning. If this isn’t a possibility, set up some quick video calls with team members with the assistance of your manager.

Prepare for each induction meeting

As part of the induction process, your new employer will set up various meetings with leaders of different departments within the company. Before each one, find out who the inductor is and what their role entails. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice and suggestions, including who else may be beneficial for you to spend time with as you learn the ropes. These people are inductors because they possess valued expertise, so tap into their knowledge to help get yourself more acquainted and settle into the business.

Ask more questions

There’s really no such thing as too many questions when you start a new role. Ask questions that focus on gaining information, instead of questioning processes that may net a defensive response from team members. The more questions you ask, the easier it’ll be to get fully up to speed.

Book one-on-one time with your new boss

If possible, book one-on-one time with your new boss in your first week to start building what is such a critical relationship for your success in this new role. Dig deeper to understand what your manager expects from you, how they like to communicate and their management style. You could potentially talk to them about your own learning style, too.

Finding out the kind of traits your new boss values in an employee will go a long way to helping you build a good relationship with them moving forward.

Remain focused on your job description

Throughout your first day and into your first few weeks, keep your new job description handy and review it regularly. This will help you stay focussed at a time when it’s easy to feel lost. Reflect on how what you are learning will help you achieve success in your role.

Don’t try to change the world in your first week or even month. You may be managing people or tasked with changing an existing process, but make sure you pay due respect to the people and business by understanding how and why things have been done before you start implementing major changes.

Make friends at work

We spend a significant amount of our time at work, so it helps if you can build positive relationships with those around you. There are several ways you can move a professional work relationship into the ‘work friend’ category. For instance, if you’ve had a few conversations with a colleague and you’re getting along, try inviting them out for lunch or a coffee in your break. If you are invited to lunch, accept. Having even one or two friends at work can make any work environment that much more enjoyable.

Keep in touch with your recruiter

Remember that your recruitment consultant is always on hand to offer support throughout your transition into a new role. If any issues surface, discuss them with your recruiter as they will be able to offer some strategies in moving forward.

Get enough rest

During your first few days and weeks in a new job, you’re gaining an enormous amount of new information and dealing with the stresses of starting in a new environment. It can be exhausting so make sure you look after your mental health and wellbeing during this time.

For instance, make sure you’re getting to bed early to get as much sleep as possible, getting away from the desk for some exercise and when the weekend comes around, switch off and make the most of your downtime.

If your hours have changed from your last job, use your first couple of weeks to create your new work-life balance routine. Take note of what time people arrive in the morning, leave in the evening and go to lunch, then adjust accordingly. It will be hard to implement a new routine at the beginning, but after a few weeks it will feel more natural.

Tips for starting a new job remotely

If your new position is completely remote, here are a few additional tips to help you out.

Login early

While you won’t have to think about the commute on your first day, there can be plenty of other challenges that may get in the way on your first day. Give yourself a few moments before you start to ensure everything is working and you can connect.

Understand daily expectations

When you start a new job remotely, it’s important to understand your managers expectations and how best to update them on your progress. Be proactive and check in with them regularly and raise any questions sooner rather than later.

Get to know your colleagues from afar

As with any new job, you’ll want to start getting to know your new remote team from day one. Grab any opportunities available to have video calls with team members. Don’t forget to connect with them on LinkedIn.

To help you navigate this process and start settling into a new role while working from home, download our guide:

Actively listen when starting a new job

During the first few days in your new role, ensure you’re taking everything in as much as possible. It is fine to ask questions, but you need to make sure that you are listening and observing first. When you start to onboard information efficiently, you’ll be in the best position to quickly fit in and align to the company culture.

You are also bound to experience a steep learning curve, so make good quality notes so you can keep better track of all the material you encounter.

Above all, try to enjoy your first week in your new job. Embrace the changes and the challenges ahead.

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