In today’s economy, landing your dream job is a huge achievement. After celebrating your impending career move, it’s important to quickly refocus on what lies ahead and what you should do after accepting the job offer. While the job search and interview process was perhaps grueling, so too will be your first days and weeks with your new company. My role as an executive recruiter affords me the inside track on how companies evaluate new hires. I enjoy following up with clients and candidates and hearing how things are going.
Regardless of company size or industry, there are some universal recommendations that ring true across the board. To make a positive and lasting impression with your new coworkers and supervisors, consider the following:
- Do Your Homework – Continue your pre-interview research about the company. Learn the names of key executives and managers.
- Develop Relationships – Make an effort to forge effective partnerships with your new coworkers. Understand cross-functionalities of various positions within the company so that you can be a valuable asset to your peers.
- Set Goals – and Achieve Them – Your first month on the job should be about much more than “getting your feet wet.” As a job seeker, your new employer saw potential in you. Confirm that belief. Set manageable, timely and meaningful goals…and then achieve them.
- Dress For Success – Business attire is always an appropriate choice in the early stages of a new job. Once you understand the company culture and attitude about workplace attire, you can adapt your wardrobe accordingly.
In terms of your very first day of work, advice authors Brett and Kay McCray offers some additional insight in ensuring that day one of your new position sets the stage for a positive, lasting work experience. Essentially, remember what your mom taught you – get a good night’s sleep, eat a hearty breakfast, leave ten minutes earlier than you suspect your commute will take, and most importantly, smile and introduce yourself to everyone you meet along the way.
It’s also important to note that while you certainly are focused on making a good impression in your new job, it’s crucial to leave your previous employer with a positive impression as well. Tie up any loose ends, and offer to make yourself available for questions or clarification on any tasks you’re leaving behind. You never know when your career search may begin again and you’ll want to tap into your network of prior colleagues and managers. Leave them with nothing but positive things to say about you. This will set the stage for you to move into your new position feeling good about your past accomplishments while taking on the new challenges your dream job has in store.
There is no debating that your first day on a new job is an exciting and celebratory moment. Make the most of it…and lay the foundation for a successful career with your new company.
What tips have you learned along the way? I welcome your ideas on how new employees can make the most of their first day of work.
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