Megan Smith
Marketing Analyst

Job searching is quite a process. You’ve probably compiled a list of your skills, strengths, weaknesses, and adjusted your resume according to each job description. After gathering that information, you likely searched through many platforms for a job that met your criteria. Once applied, you got an interview, aced the interview, accepted the job, and now you’re waiting for your first day. The time you’ve put into finding this position was well worth it. But the preparation does not stop there. Ensuring you have a great start to your first day, as well as your week, comes with some groundwork.

First-day preparations:

1. Prep the night before. The following tasks can aid in the reduction of feeling rushed on the morning of your first day. Pack a lunch along with some snacks and a water bottle, gather your work gear such as a notepad, pen, computer, charger, headset, mouse, and any other essential items like hand lotion or lip balm. Once you have everything, place them in one spot. This will help ease your mind since you know everything you need for your day is in one spot and accounted for. Along with gathering those items, a good night’s sleep is very important, as you want to be well-rested for the day. Keep a bedtime routine and stick with it. Another tip is to set a timer for your coffee machine so it is brewed when you are ready to start your workday.

2. Research the company. Learning more about the company you will work at will help you understand not only your job duties but also how the company operates. Deep dive into their website and social media channels to get a feel for their company culture and the appropriate attire. If you have questions when researching, write them down so you can ask your manager or a coworker for clarification. Having a clear understanding of what the company does, their values and the type of work they do can assist you in your tasks.

3. Contact your manager and team. Send them an email stating how excited you are for your first day and what they can expect from you regarding how you communicate, your organization techniques, and how they can best reach you. This shows your excitement to start work and sets up a baseline of how they can expect to work with you.

4. Confirm your workday hours. Make sure to confirm the time you will start your shift, how long of a lunch break you have, and when you can end your workday. Having these things figured out will help you prioritize your tasks and set expectations.

5. Test technology. If you have received your work computer or any other technology for your position, it is a good idea to test them out. Whether it be installing the program, logging in, or testing your microphone and camera set up.

First-week to-dos:

1. Arrive early. Having an extra 5 – 10 minutes before starting your workday allows time for any technical or personal hiccups. If you’re nervous, take a few minutes and try some relaxation techniques, like breathing in for 3 seconds and out for 5. This applies to remote positions as well. If your computer is acting up, you have some time to figure out why, or to contact technical support.

2. Make a list of your tasks. If you received any information on your job duties, listing them out can help you prioritize and visualize how busy your week will be. You can also determine what tasks you may need clarification or help on.

3. Ask questions. It is important to not let your pride get the best of you, especially during your first week. Getting clarification on how the company operates, who you could contact for questions regarding projects or certain tasks, or if you should attend certain meetings should not be left up to interpretation.

4. Schedule 1:1s. Whether it be virtual or in-person, getting to know your co-workers, team members, and managers is a great way to be a team player. You can really grasp how each department operates, how they communicate, and how they receive feedback. This can play a vital role throughout your career.

5. Practice self-care. With all the prep and stress before and during your first week on the job, you may feel run-down and overwhelmed. Taking a few moments or even an hour to really care for yourself is vital during these times. This could mean reading a book, taking a walk, or simply sitting outside in a park. Whatever you need to practice some self-care, do it.

Executing and completing these tasks will help alleviate the stress that comes with the first-day hustle and bustle of starting a new career. Being well prepared, having a positive attitude, and making sure to have some self-care time can assure victory during your first day and week at your new position.