Getting your first job is an exhilarating feeling. You’ve aced the interview, got the job and now you’re ready to start your new role and make a great impression. The transition from uni to office life can sometimes be a tricky one though. You’ve got a boss to impress, colleagues to bond with and a whole set of new skills to learn. But help is at hand! Here’s some handy tips that will hopefully make the transition a whole lot smoother.
1) The Right Attitude
Using your initiative goes a long way in an office environment and if you’re the newbie you’ll want to impress with your proactive attitude. You’re going to be absorbing a lot of new info so even if you think you’ve got a photographic memory, taking notes is a good idea. It’s good to ask questions when you’re unsure about something but if you’ve jotted down some guidelines you can refer to these as well.
2) Dress to Impress
You’ll want to make sure you’re dressed the part for your new job, so it’s a good idea to find out the dress code before you start. You don’t want to be the only one in jeans and a t-shirt when everyone else is wearing a suit and tie. How embarrassing. If you’ve visited the office and met colleagues before you start the role you’ve probably already got a good idea of dress code, but it’s always a good idea to double check. ‘Dress Down Fridays’ are also a thing in some offices.
3) Don’t Be Late
Unless you’ve been cornered by a moose or locked in a cupboard, you’re going to have to be on time for work. Public transport is notoriously unreliable so make sure you build some flexibility into your schedule. That way if your bus breaks down or the train driver goes MIA, you’ll still be in with a good chance of getting to the office in time.
Even the most dedicated students sometimes skip a lecture or turn up late to class, but when you’re working, you’ll need to make sure your punctuality is on point. Nothing annoys a manager more than an employee who is consistently late to work.
4) Read Your Contract
Your new company will issue you a contract of employment, and you’ll usually be asked to read and sign this before you start your new role. It’s tempting to just whack your signature down without a thorough inspection, especially if you’re given a stack of long and wordy documents. But don’t do that…
It’s in your own best interests to give all the info you’re given a thorough read to find out detailed info about your new company’s policies and employment benefits. If there’s anything you’re unsure about, then make sure you ask before signing on the dotted line.
5) Stay Motivated
You may have wowed your new colleagues at interview, but now is not the time to get complacent. Most job roles have a probationary (trial) period, which can vary in length depending on your company’s policy. You’ll need to work hard in those first few months to make a good enough impression to seal the deal and get kept on permanently after your trial ends.
6) Think Positive
There are bound to be some aspects of your job that you really enjoy, and others that you find as dull as dishwater. Likewise, there are going to be colleagues that you get on with, and others that you don’t work as well with. Tackling any problematic issues that arise with a positive attitude can not only help you to enjoy your job a lot more, but also lead to better productivity.
7) Get Involved
You’re going to be spending a lot of time with your new colleagues, so getting on well with them is key to a productive and rewarding work experience. Most companies have a social aspect, and work meals or outings are a great way to get to know the people you’re working with. Now that you’re an office worker, you’ll get the chance to experience The Office Christmas Party - usually one of the highlights of the year, and definitely an event not to be missed!
Emily Valentine writes graduate careers advice for Inspiring Interns, a graduate recruitment agency. Check out their website to see which internships and graduate jobs are currently available. Or, if you’re looking to hire an intern, have a look at their innovative Video CVs. You can also follow Emily on twitter at @emily_v_photos