Due to COVID-19’s effect on the employment landscape, many of us will be starting to carve our own path in a new position this summer. Beginning a new career can be an exciting challenge, but getting your bearings in a new environment will often give us just a tiny bit of anxiety. Today we will examine ways to ease your transition and make a great first impression in your new place of work!
Dress for Success
Our first step begins before we even set foot in an office (or in front of our webcam)—look our best! People may not immediately remember your name, title, position, or other details when you first meet them, but they will take notice of your appearance. Make sure that you’re familiar with the office dress code, and, for at least the first day, try to dress on the higher end of that scale. Like most of us, down the line you may get a little more casual with what you toss on in the morning, but show everyone that you’ve put forth the effort on your first day.
Maintain a Positive Attitude
Positive energy. Good vibes. Big mood! However you want to say it: Just do your best to bring a good attitude. Nobody likes being reminded to “smile more”, but if there was ever a day to be the most bubbly version of yourself, this would be it. It’s important to leave your coworkers with the impression that you are approachable and friendly. You want your team to know that you are someone that they will enjoy working with.
Meet and Greet
You will likely be escorted around the new digs by your hiring manager or someone that you have met at an earlier part of the interview process. When you inevitably get introduced to your coworkers, try your best to really listen to what they have to say and commit their names to memory. Often when we meet new people, we are so focused on keeping our cool and emitting a confident persona that we get a little distracted when listening to what the other party is actually telling us, thus missing their name. Try to really focus on what the other person is telling you. A little trick that commonly helps is to repeat the person’s name back to them after the initial introduction—it may help you associate that face with that name! Word of caution: If you do that when meeting a large group, you’re going to sound like a robot. Nobody needs the Name-O-Tron 5000 going down a line of people and repeating their names back to them!
Although you’re the new person in the office, keep in mind that management brought you in for a reason. You’re new, but not out of place. You’re supposed to be there, so have confidence in your actions. It’s perfectly fine to make a few jokes at your demise, just make sure that you never give off the impression that you’re genuinely over your head. First impressions go a long way in shaping your coworker’s comfort around you.
Risk it, No Biscuit
Today is most definitely not the day to take any risks. Don’t try out any crazy outfit, don’t utilize any controversial slang, and try to keep all of your jokes about super general subject matter like weather, traffic, dad jokes, etc…. nothing that could possibly offend anyone! We always recommend being yourself and letting your personality shine at the workplace, however, give yourself at least a few days to mesh with your environment a little more.
Be a Good Listener
You’re going to get lots of new information and learn a ton of new things on your first day, so just do your best to focus on the conversations that you’re having. Be courteous and save any questions or comments you have for others until they are done speaking. You are likely to make a fair amount of mistakes as you grow accustomed to your new role, but the important thing is that you continue to learn from them. Don’t be afraid to use your coworkers as a source for information—they will be glad to help out!