So, you’re about to start your first full time job. If you’ve got no idea what to expect, how to act, or even what to do on your first day in the office, don’t worry – you’re not alone. We know that navigating the ins and outs of the professional world can seem daunting, which is why we’ve put together a few helpful tips to help you settle in.
Look the part
At school or university, you might have rolled out of bed, pulled on a pair of jeans and left the house without even brushing your hair – but it goes without saying that for most workplaces this simply won’t cut it. It’s important to understand what is expected from professional work attire.
For women, this typically means:
- Shirts or dresses that cover the shoulders
- Dresses or skirts that don’t sit above the knee
- Hair and make-up done in a natural style
For men, professional attire includes:
- Button-up shirts with a collar
- Business pants
- Well-groomed facial hair
Of course, dress codes can differ vastly office to office. When in doubt, it’s always best to over dress until you get a feel for the culture of your new workplace.
Make a good impression
First impressions really do count at work. Your first interaction with your boss, co-workers or clients can easily set the tone for the relationships you have with them in the future. With this in mind, be mindful of the following:
Don’t be late: Organise yourself so that you arrive 5-10 minutes early on your first day. While showing up a little early is encouraged, showing up too early isn’t, so don’t arrive an hour before you supposed to start either.
Act professionally: Behave in a way that shows you’re professional and able to represent your new workplace to customers, clients and colleagues. So, those inappropriate jokes and discussions about your private life are best saved for after-work hours.
Be friendly: Even if you’re not the most sociable person, smiling, asking questions, and practicing good manners are all great ways to make a lasting impression.
Be responsible: Be respectful of deadlines and always complete your work on time. Also don’t take liberties, like long lunch breaks and early finishes – leave it to your boss to initiate.
Be part of the team
Who said a full-time job had to be all work and no play? Most workplaces strive to create collaborative workplace cultures, so it’s important to show you’re part of the team.
Whether it’s accepting an invitation to go out to lunch with a few colleagues, sticking around for Friday afternoon drinks, or even making casual conversation with your desk buddy – building relationships with the people in your office is a great way to make the transition to full time work a lot easier.
Starting a full-time job isn’t as scary as you might think. Follow these simple tips and you’ll be navigating your new role like a pro in no time.