Congratulations! You landed a new career. Take a few moments to celebrate, but then consider this: now is when the real work begins. Your first few months in a new position are critical; this is your opportunity to impress your managers and establish yourself as a competent, motivated employee. Here’s what you need to know about making a good impression:
Your First Day
Your first day will likely contain a lot of introductions, meetings, and policies. Start the day off right by:
- Being polite to the receptionist. These individuals keep the whole ship running smoothly, so it’s amazing how much they can help you. Remember, it will never hurt your career to be nice to people, but being rude to those who don’t ‘seem’ to be able to advance your career could hurt you. Maybe they’ve worked there for many years and know the CEO or your manager really well. In any case, it’s wise to be courteous.
- Get to know your coworkers. There’s always a chance that you got the position over an internal candidate, which can cause some awkwardness on the first day. Make a point to say hello and be friendly to your fellow workers, as it’s essential that everyone work together toward a common goal.
Deliver What You Sold
You got the position because you sold the management on your drive, intrinsic motivation, and any other qualities they were searching for. Now, it’s time to deliver on those promises. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you have some time to settle in, now is the time to deliver your “A-Game.” Find out what needs to be done, and do it well.
Choose Your Company Carefully
In the days and weeks ahead, you’ll meet a lot of coworkers and you may even make friends across different departments. However, this is time to analyze the company you want to keep and how it might affect your job. Here are some actionable tips:
- Look at the star performers and learn about what makes them successful, so you can emulate these qualities.
- Be wary of aligning yourself with people who are negative or disgruntled. Avoid complainers and slackers, as you don’t want to be lumped in with them in management’s eyes. Instead, seek company from positive people.
- Study and assess the expectations of your supervisor. This requires listening carefully to directions and asking other trusted people for suggestions about how you can live up to those expectations.
Remember, you only get one chance at creating a great first impression at your new job. If you don’t take this new opportunity seriously, you’ll wind up setting the wrong first impression and setting yourself up for failure. Conversely, with some time and effort a good first impression will wow your supervisor and establish yourself as a trusted and valued employee. The choice is really up to you.