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CAREER DEVELOPMENT / NOV. 21, 2016
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How to Make a Good Impression in Your First Week at a New Job

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Few of us are lucky enough to waltz into a new job without some nervousness. This can range from mild jitters to full-blown anxiety. We worry that we’ll struggle to complete the work, that our colleagues won’t like us, and whether we’ve made the right move for our careers. If you’re ready to start a new role, take a deep breath and read on. This advice can help you make a good impression in your first week at a new job.

1. Research Your New Employer

Stepping into a new organisation can feel like stepping onto a brand new planet. However, this leap can feel less disorienting if you’ve done your research before you arrive. The business’s corporate website, its social media pages, and any news articles about the organisation are all great places to start. These sources will help you learn more about what your new employer does, its corporate culture, the most important staff members and even its charity efforts. Once you start your job, ask relevant questions about things you’ve learned to show others you’ve been brushing up.  

2. Maintain a Positive Attitude

Few things make a better first impression than a smile. According to Kelton Global research conducted for the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, 48 percent of adults say a smile is the feature they remember most after meeting someone. A gleaming smile was much more memorable than the way someone speaks, which polled 25 percent, and the way someone dresses, which scored only 9 percent.

You might feel like crying at times during your first week, but try to push aside your worries and remain upbeat. Focusing on the enthusiasm you feel for your new position and the possibilities it holds should help you keep that positive mindset. There’s nothing wrong with faking it either. Scientific studies show that even forcing a smile can lower your stress levels, so before long you should feel as happy as your face suggests you are!

3. Arrive on Time and Don’t Rush to Leave

Arriving on time is crucial when you’re starting a new job. While bosses might understand running late on occasion once they get to know you, they’ll frown on this behaviour early on.

“If you have any attendance or punctuality issues in the first few days or weeks, you’ve already lost a significant battle — their confidence in you,” Ann Marie Russell, an AmeriCorps program coordinator, told Quintessential. “People will take you as seriously as you seem to take yourself and your work.”

Once you’re at work, don’t rush to get out the door. While no one expects you to put in excessive amounts of overtime, you don’t want to get the reputation for clock-watching. Come to a natural stopping point at the end of the day and for the first week or so, ask whether it’s OK for you to leave before you depart.

4. Meet With Other Departments

No department exists in a vacuum. While you may quickly learn how your team operates, it usually takes longer to understand how what you do fits into the organisation as a whole. Speed this process along by setting up meetings with representatives from other departments within the business. Ask pertinent questions about the work they’re doing and listen closely to the answers. This practice will help people know who you are and that you’ve taken a genuine interest in the business.

5. Sync Your Phone to Receive Company Emails

With the rise of Bring Your Own Device initiatives, popular smartphones like the Apple iPhone 7 have become effective professional tools as well as personal devices. We load business apps onto them, take video calls with clients and receive company emails around the clock. Make sure you stay in the loop by asking the IT department to sync your phone to receive company emails. Your colleagues will be impressed by your initiative, and you’ll make sure you’re abreast of company business as it happens. 

The first week in a new job is almost always the most stressful. Put these tips into practice within your first days to impress your colleagues and set yourself up for success in your new position.

Have you ever used any of the tips mentioned above to transition into a new job? Did you find them effective? Let us know in the comments section below…

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