I started a brand new job this week! It’s within my career, but in a completely different environment that will be outside of my comfort zone for a bit. I was surprisingly not nervous about the first day, but that could be because I knew the first day was just general orientation. Plus, I planned ahead to make sure I was ready for the day and had everything with me I might need.
Whether you’re fresh out of school or making a career change this is a helpful list of do’s, do not’s, and must brings for your first day of work!
- Smile a lot and be friendly. It gives a great first impression and will help to settle your nerves.
- Introduce yourself to the people you are orienting with or to those in your department. Assertiveness is noticed and can start you off on the right foot.
- Wear something professional, but comfortable. It’s likely you’ll be sitting in a conference room for most of the time and don’t want to wear the pants that dig into your stomach three hours into the day. Sidenote: These are my FAVORITE work pants. Also, comfortable shoes are a must. I had to take a long outdoor tour on my first day and was glad I went with the flats instead of the heels.
- Ask questions! This might be the only time you have direct access to HR, so now’s the time to get those questions answered.
- Be late! They may say, “Oh, it’s okay, we understand.” But they’re really thinking, “If she can’t get here on time on day one what are we getting ourselves into?” Leave your house early and allow extra time for traffic.
- Play on your phone every time there is a break. How are you supposed to get to know people if you’re checking Facebook every time you have a chance? Be present.
- Look bored. I know it can be tough when you’re on hour two of the benefits package explanation, but hang in there. People remember the face that isn’t engaged, and not in a good way.
- Sit with your back to the presentation. When you walk in survey the table situation and pick a seat that won’t cause you to have to crane your neck around all day.
What’s in my work bag – First Day Essentials
- Extra Resumes -In case HR needs another copy.
- Check – Some companies need a voided check to set up direct deposit.
- Notebook and Pen – Come prepared.
- Tissues – A lot of office buildings are dry and cold which can lead to a runny nose.
- Cardigan – In case the temperature is subzero, as it is in most offices.
- Lint brush – It doesn’t matter if I throw my outfit on at the last minute and run out the door, I always end up with dog hair on my pants.
- Gum/Mints – For after lunch freshness.
- Pic on your phone of your license plate number in case you need it for a parking pass. I can never seem to remember mine.