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Marble Jar Gang Career Counseling: First Day at Your New Job


The basic premise or formula is to recognize that when your skills + traits + behaviors are placed in the right environment the outcome will give you a greater chance of success and happiness in your work.


You've been hired! We bet you're more than a little nervous about starting the new job and being the ‘new kid on the block’. Here are a few items to consider that will certainly make the transition go more smoothly.


1. Tidy up any lose ends with Human Resources by completing any paperwork, background check tasks and let them know via an email that you are completing these by the due date.


2. Even if you have managed to take some time off between positions, remain in touch with your new manager and any colleagues you have interviewed with by sending an email to say how excited you are to join the team. This really helps with the ‘first day jitters’ as you will have already started a relationship.

3. On Day-One plan the morning so that you’re not rushed and arrive a few minutes early. You may have asked HR about their dress code but if not, be conservative. Bring a small bag of what you want to keep in your desk, as you will unpack it later. Your first mission is to get the office geography down; breakroom, bathroom, your manager’s office and their managers office. Put your personal phone on silent, put it in your desk and do not make personal calls until you are certain of office protocol which could be up to a week. (tell your mom not to call to see how you are doing)


4. Remember names by repeating them or jotting them down. Smile and introduce yourself. This first impression will be the one that lasts and also will be what people mention to each other about the new person. Your manager may take you out to lunch on your first day and this may have been planned in advance. If not, bring a lunch and head to the breakroom to meet others. Do not sit at your desk alone, it’s just not the right message to your co-workers. Plan to stay a few minutes late to hang at your desk and say goodbye to the people you met. Use their names, it shows you are listening. Also you will see who stays really late and make a note if that is your boss.


5. Become a team member by learning about what projects people are working on, take part in office activities in and out of the office, ask for advice on process and always be grateful. Volunteer to help someone do a task, when appropriate, as it shows interest and initiative. Keep your manager informed of your activities as they may gently mention to avoid some activities that can suck you into a bad situation. It’s one way for them to mentor you.


6. Do not be afraid to introduce yourself to upper management when you meet in a breakroom or elevator. Tell them your name, what department you work in and who you work for. Positive attitudes are contagious and believe us, upper management needs to know that there are people who are thrilled to join their company. If you saw something on the company website or heard about a trip they just returned from then mention it. Do not expect a lot of chatter but you should get a “hi” the next time you cross paths.


Your homework is to take a deep dive into the corporate website and learn the names and titles of upper management levels above you. A marble goes in your jar.

Within the first 30 days you will know your co-workers names, family names and a bit about their lives as they will know the same about you. You may have found your ‘go-to-friend’ who will be a trusted guide. Goals and objectives will be set with completion dates being met. You will become a part of the culture and a member of the team.


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