How to Prepare for Your First Day at a New Job

By Victoria Robertson on June 5, 2019

Starting a new job is overwhelming, and even more so when it’s your first job. There is a lot of information to know before beginning a new job, but when you’re new to the workforce, it’s difficult to know where to begin.

For that reason, these six tips are designed to help you prepare for your first day, whether the job itself is new or you are entirely new to the workforce, or both!

So, without further ado, here are six tips on how to prepare for your first day at a new job.

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1. Dress Professionally

First and foremost, it’s important that you appear professionally on your first day. Many companies will tell you that their workplace is “relaxed” and that business casual is okay, but you should always dress up a bit for your first day until you know for sure.

For one, you want to make a good impression, which isn’t the case when you show up underdressed. Second, it’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed, so when in doubt on what to wear, go business professional.

2. Don’t Come Empty Handed

Many individuals make the mistake of showing up for their first day empty handed, so don’t fall victim to that problem. While most organizations will provide you with everything you’re going to need for your first day and beyond, it’s a good idea to have a notebook, a pen and a cup of coffee if you’re a coffee drinker, as you never know what you’re walking into.

Again, it’s better to be more prepared than necessary than it is to be underprepared, so be sure to bring everything you think you may need and, if you don’t need it, no harm done!

3. Map Out Your Route

Showing up late on your first day isn’t an option. Not only does this look unprofessional, but it also makes a bad first impression. For this reason, you should map out your route in advance so that you don’t get lost, you are familiar with the traffic and you leave yourself plenty of time to arrive in the morning.

When in doubt, give yourself plenty of extra time, just in case you happen upon construction or an accident. Basically, your first day is important, so arriving early and waiting in your car for a bit isn’t a bad thing.

4. Do Your Research

It’s never a good idea to show up to your first day unprepared. For one, you should be researching the company you’re going to be working for (if you haven’t already) and you should also check out the LinkedIn profiles of the individuals you will be working with. This not only gives you an idea of what the day to day will look like, but it also helps you to better prepare.

When it comes to doing research, you are obviously going to go through training and learn from your manager, but going in prepared with the information already readily available to you showcases your ambition and dedication to the role, which are both good things.

5. Start Brainstorming

Along these same lines, when you begin a new job, many individuals show up and begin blind. In other words, they don’t know enough about the role to contribute until after they have gone through the training process.

For that reason, if you show up having already brainstormed some ideas, you’ll be ahead of the curve and your manager will be impressed with your initiative. Basically, the more prepared you are, the more likely you are to impress on day one.

6. Be Ready to Hit the Ground Running

Finally, you should always be ready to hit the ground running when you begin a new position. In other words, don’t show up on your first day assuming it’s going to be relaxed and more introductory, as you never know. Often, this is exactly the case, but other times, you’ll be surprised to learn your new job starts immediately.

This is why it’s important to be more prepared than less, and you should always be ready to hit the ground running the second you walk in the door, whether you’re actually going to or not.

Again, starting a new position isn’t easy, and it’s often overwhelming, scary and stressful. However, when you go into the position prepared, everything seems a lot less overwhelming. The more you know, and the more you’re prepared as to what to expect, the less frightening the entire process is, which means all you need to worry about is doing your job and doing it well.

With that all being said, keep these six tips in mind when you begin your next job and there’s no doubt that you will be successful!

Good luck!

Victoria is a dedicated writer who graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She currently writes freelance pieces for various sites and works in Marketing for Myndbee Inc., promoting their current mobile app, Picpal.

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