If you’re an introvert like me, starting a new job can be terrifying enough to call in sick on the very first day. I’ve been in my new role (at an old job) for a full week now and I’m starting to meet some new staff and figured out my footing. It feels weird to be surrounded by stress and not feel. I’m generally either pretty calm or pretty stressed, but never in between. I think it’s because I got all the stress out of my system before I started my job.
Whether you’re starting a new job at a new company or starting in a new position, here are some things you should do on your first day of work.
1. Ask a lot of questions
The amount of questions I emailed my boss before arriving on my first day was ridiculous. I asked the normal questions, like if there were any remaining paperwork I needed to complete, what the dress code is, if there was anything she would like me to do before I arrive. She actually scheduled a phone call with me before I started to answer any of my questions and to keep me in the loop of what I should expect. Some people may not have the time for a phone call, so an email would suffice.
2. Introduce yourself
You’ll be surrounded by a lot of unfamiliar faces, but don’t want for them to say something to you. Speak up, introduce yourself, and shake their hand. I can’t tell you how many times I stood off to the side to wait for someone to introduce me to all the people in the room but let me tell you: it’s more awkward for you and for everyone else.
3. Wear something you’re comfortable in
You’re definitely going to want to follow the companies dress code, but don’t wear a brand new pair of shoes if you know you’re going to be on your feet all day. Where something that fits well so you’re not fidgeting with the sleeves or pulling at your pants all day, and also wear something you love and feel good in. Wearing a favorite piece of clothing automatically makes me feel good about yourself.
4. Smile a lot
I’m a nervous smiler so this is beneficial to me. Smile at the strangers you pass by in the hallway, smile when your new boss answers your question, smile when you’re bombarded with a new task you don’t know how to handle. Smiling makes you feel like you have everything under control and your new co-workers will appreciate your positivity.
5. Eat lunch with someone
I still get the first day jitters when I think about having to eat lunch in a new environment. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve eaten lunch by myself because I’m too shy to introduce myself or because I’ve gone too long eating alone that coming in now would be weird. Be bold and sit down at a table with other people. Laugh and make eye contact even if you don’t want to participate in the conversation.
What are some things that help you get through a rough first day at a new job?