Advertising
Advertising

6 Things You Need to Do When Starting a New Job

6 Things You Need to Do When Starting a New Job

All major changes in life tend to make us fairly nervous and uncertain, and there are few things as nerve wrecking as the first few days on a new job. You want to impress, let everyone know that you are a true professional and get as friendly as you can with your new colleagues. If you don’t have much experience, especially if it’s your first job, then you’ll need to do a few little things to prepare for this new challenge. Let’s take a look at some of the best things that you can do to make the first days of your new job stress-free and highly productive.

Update Your Wardrobe to Look Professional

Some of the people reading this are, no doubt, quite fashion-savvy and understand the ins and outs of the business casual and more formal dress codes, but a lot of people are new to this sort of thing. Millennials in general tend to be more laid back and like to add their own personal touch to everything, but as long as you follow the basic guidelines you can still let your inner self shine and look like a professional.

Get the Right Gadgets to Boost Productivity

Once you’ve got your business attire sorted, it’s time to look at some of the tools of the trade. Think of yourself as business superhero – you’ve got the suit, but you still need some cool gadgets. The most important tool you will always have on you is your smartphone, which you will use for anything from sending emails to accessing information in the cloud and using team management apps.

Advertising

Finding a proper business phone can be a bit of a chore, but it is a smart investment that pays for itself in the long run. Be sure to install a few useful apps that you will be using day-to-day, and forget about games and silly fitness apps that you will never use.

Learn All You Can about the Company’s Culture and Rules

image01

    You will be the “new guy/gal” or, if you prefer classic cop show nomenclature, the “rookie,” but you don’t have to be a fish out of water. Sure, it’ll take time to get to know everyone, get a sense of how office politics work and all, but you should come prepared from day one. Dig through the company website, ask a few questions during your final interview, look at any written material on things like the dress code and corporate policies and try your best to fit in.

    Advertising

    Once you start working, it’s best to ask your colleagues about anything you are not quite sure of, no matter how trivial it may seem. The social and psychological aspects of sharing a workspace with other humans are just as important to master as the skills necessary to do your job properly. You might look a bit unsure of yourself or eager to please at first, but after a week or two you’ll be all settled in and accepted as part of the team.

    Work on Mastering Confident Body Language

    Being seen as a confident and ambitious employee, and a cool and interesting colleague will help you win over your coworkers and the bosses much more quickly than just keeping to yourself and letting your work speak for you. In fact, as unfair as it may seem to someone new to the corporate culture, putting in overtime, meeting every deadline, being insanely punctual and just generally courteous won’t lead you towards a promotion or improve your reputation if you don’t make an effort to charm everyone’s pants off.

    The first step is to learn about confident body language and practice moving, standing, sitting, speaking, gesturing and listening while looking completely sure of yourself. In order to emanate power you must learn to take up space – without looking like a street thug, of course – avoid nervous movement, speak more slowly and loud enough, and keep the right amount of eye contact and so on. It takes practice, but you can get a hang of it within a month or two.

    Advertising

    Read Books on Business, Manners and Conflict Resolution

      There is a sort of meta-job component to any line of work – it’s the ability to navigate business waters, find polite ways to say “no” or persuade people, knowing how to efficiently resolve office conflicts in your favor, and so on. These are the type of skills that you pick up after a few years of working in an office environment, but there are tons of great books out there that can help you get a better understanding of how to climb your way up the corporate ladder.

      I’d suggest reading up on business books, as well as books on dealing with problematic people at work, some of the best examples being “The Ape in the Corner Office: How to Make Friends, Win Fights, and Work Smarter by Understanding Human Nature” by Richard Conniff and “ConCom: Conflict Communication A New Paradigm in Conscious Communication” by Rory Miller.

      Advertising

      Apart from that, a good book on manners like “The Etiquette Book: A Complete Guide to Modern Manners” by Jodi R. R. Smith will help you get through all the formalities of business lunches and polite conversations.

      Create a Work Journal to Keep Track of Your Tasks

      Now, before you say anything, this doesn’t mean that you should walk around with a clipboard and jot down everything that happens during the day. You can simply note the tame and date when you’ve started a project or were assigned a certain task, the time and date you completed it, a few instructions that the boss or your teammates gave you and so on.

      Not only will this help you stay on track with all the little tasks around the office, but it will also allow you to cover your back in case of a dispute, as you’ll be able to clearly show just how much work you’ve done, and what you’ve been told to do. People will just think that you are a bit of a perfectionist and won’t really give it a second thought, but it will help you a lot on the long run.
      This is by no means a be all end all list of things you can do, nor are any of the rules set in stone, but these few useful suggestions will help you leave a good impression and adapt to your new workplace in record time. Have a little bit of patience, mind your manners and try to raise through the ranks as a good team member who knows the rules.

      Featured photo credit: unsplash.com via pexels.com

      More by this author

      Nemanja Manojlovic

      Editor at MyCity Web

      10 Things To Remember If You Love A Sociopath The Smart Ways to Save Money Fast (Even If You’re a Big Spender) 5 Secrets to Being Confident and Earning People’s Respect How To Get a Killer Gym Body Without Going to the Gym 10 Sustainable Health And Fitness Habits Everyone Can Adopt

      Trending in Career Advice

      110 Job Search Tools Every Jobseekers Need To Know About 210 Websites To Learn Something New In 30 Minutes A Day 350 Great People To Follow On LinkedIn, No Matter Your Industry 4If You Have This Key Behavior, You’ll Be More Successful Than 90% Of People 5How To Climb Up Your Career Ladder Faster Than Others In A Big Corporate.

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising

      5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

      5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

      Not being able to stay productive at work is a problem that everyone runs into at some point; no matter how much you like your job, there are certain factors that prevent you from staying at maximum proficiency throughout the whole day.

      A lack of productive focus at work can lead to extra stress on yourself, missed deadlines, passed opportunities, raise denial, demotion and even termination.

      So, if you are someone who has trouble with your productivity, here are five effective tips on how to be productive at work:

      1. Take breaks

      First and foremost, it’s important for you to take regular breaks. Trying to work throughout the whole day will tire your brain, which will then cause you to doze off and think about something else.

      If you keep working your brain, it will fill up and get jumbled with information—sort of like a computer hard drive. Taking a break would be like resetting your computer so that it can start afresh, or de-fragmenting the data so that all the information is in order.

      This is a great thing because it allows you to solve problems you were unable to solve previously, by seeing it differently; if you are able to organize your thoughts properly, you will be able to take in new information more easily.

      There have even been studies about methods of saving time and staying proficient, and taking breaks is one of the leading factors.

      According to Christine Hohlbaum, the author of The Power of Slow: 101 Ways to Save Time in Our 24/7 World, eating lunch away from your work area every day will greatly increase your productivity. Eating in your work area will give you the illusion that you are working, but whether you like it or not, your brain will begin to wander and think of something else and then you will be working tirelessly with no progress.

      It’s important to take breaks before and during work too: if you come to work in a rush because you woke up late, your mind will not be mentally prepared for the day ahead, and you will spend the first 10 to 15 minutes trying to get organized and composed before you can actually start working.

      Advertising

      Instead, you should try to wake up 20 minutes earlier than the time it would take you to “just get” to work. Take that time to stare off into space and not worry about anything.

      If you do this, your brain will be empty and ready for all the challenges it has coming for the next few hours.

      If your employer only allows a set amount of breaks during the workday, that doesn’t mean you can’t just get up and walk around for a quick break every now and then.

      Even if it’s only 5 minutes, it will refresh your brain and you will gain renewed energy to do your job.

      Learn more about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

      2. Pace yourself and balance your workload

      One problem that most people run into is that they underestimate the amount of work they have to do, and end up doing 50% of the work in the last 20% of the time they have to do it. This is due to an issue of balancing one’s workload.

      When you receive a project, or are doing a job you normally do, take some time to really plan out your work schedule.

      Consider how much time it took you to do this last time; determine how you can break the project into smaller parts and which can only be accomplished on certain days, and whether anything might come up that could interfere with your plan.

      All of these questions are important for starting on a project, and when answered, they will help you stay productive throughout each day.

      Advertising

      For example, if you needed to design a project to map out the amount of aid offered in various regions after Hurricane Sandy, you can break it up as follows:

      You will need to know what organizations are offering help to begin with, how much aid those organizations gave or plan to give, which regions were hit by Sandy, and which regions suffered the greatest losses.

      You start this project on a Thursday and know you have until Tuesday to gather this information.

      In order to stay productive, you need to plan out your work week—now you know you can find out which organizations are involved in helping the Hurricane Sandy Victims any day since that information is online, but gathering information on the organizations may require you to call them.

      Since phone calls can only be done during week days, you have to plan on gathering all of that information before the weekend comes.

      That is just one example of a situation in which pre-planning your project will help you stay productive; had you researched the affected regions first, you would not have received the info on the organizations until the weekend, and may have missed your chance to call them.

      That, in turn, would have wasted time you could have spent working on this project to finish it.

      Knowing what you need to do, when you can do it, and how long it will take you, is important in balancing your workload and being more productive and efficient.

      3. Put your work first

      This is an issue that usually occurs with young people who are new to the workforce: they’re often tempted with offers to go out at midday, and then come back lost in thought and unfocused on their work-related tasks.

      Advertising

      While it is important to take breaks, your breaks should consist of you clearing your mind, not loading it up with other less important information—like sports.

      However, that is not the only situation where you need to worry about putting your work first before all else.

      In a work environment, the senior employees will oftentimes push some of their menial tasks onto the newer employees. If you fall into that category, you need to know that their work is not your work, so if you have tasks that need to be done, you need to do it first.

      If you are a new employee, you must learn to say no to other people even when it means you may not be in their good graces anymore. You can help others out once your work is done, but you are paid to do your own work, not anyone else’s.

      4. Don’t open your browser unless you need them

      In this day and age, everyone is constantly monitoring their social network. This is a major pain point for companies, which is why many don’t allow employees to access their social networks on company workstations.

      When you are at work, disconnect the internet from your phone and keep your browsers closed so you’re not tempted to log onto your social media accounts or browse any sites that are not work-related.

      If you keep your browsers closed and phone tucked away, only to be used in an emergency, you will find yourself being a more productive employee right away. 

      5. Try to be happy and optimistic

      If you always have a negative outlook on life, you will be more distracted and less motivated to get work done, so it’s important for you to start your day off right.

      This can be done by having a good breakfast or by taking time in the morning to watch one of your favorite TV shows before work.

      Advertising

      If you are happy, you will find yourself able to work much more productively as your mind won’t wander into worrying about something else.

      Also, if you stay optimistic and keep telling yourself that you can do whatever you set your mind to, the tasks will seem much less daunting and will go by much more quickly.

      Take a look at more effective ways to stay positive at work:

      15 Ways To Stay Positive At Work

      Happiness and optimism are the keys to being a productive and happy employee.

      All in all, heed the five tips above and you will find yourself being one of the most productive people at your company.

      While you do not need to master them all, each and every one of them will help you become a better and more efficient employee.

      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

      Read Next