You Landed the Job – Now What?

Let’s face it.  There are thousands of freshly graduated students who are not only delighted they have achieved the success of a college degree but have landed their first job.  They are officially on their own or at least they are off to a very good start.  While it is good to relax and enjoy the fruits of your hard work, there is plenty to do.  Just as you prepared for the job search you must now prepare for your new job. You need to hit the ground running.

Before your start date, inquire of your employer if there are materials or resources that you should review ahead of time or if there is anything you can do to prepare before you start to work.  If possible, complete all paperwork before your first day at work.  There will be hiring forms, benefits, tax forms, and more. Follow your new company at the various professional and social networking sites.  It is a good idea to investigate your company on the mainstream media to make sure you are aware of any new developments that might impact you as an employee. You want to be on your toes and not be caught off guard.

Protect your reputation.  You only have one reputation. Make a good first impression. Show up early and make this a habit. Dress appropriately for the job. Be respectful and polite to everyone –especially administrative and support staff whose opinions often influence the higher ups.  It never hurts to make everyone you work with feel important. Respecting fellow coworkers is essential to job success. Don’t use the “I’m new” excuse.  Be ready to work. It is okay to ask for assistance and clarification.  Most employers expect that new employers will have questions.

Become familiar with company policies and rules. Companies have established guidelines for accessing social media, taking calls, and other technology work issues.

New employees should never be afraid to take on more work than everyone else. Volunteer for projects.  Come in early. Stay late. Keep your social life at bay for awhile.  You need to have the flexibility to stay and take on extra work if necessary. Always thank people for the help they render and give credit where credit is due. Work within the system.  If you have a great idea, share it.  Be cautious, however, of stepping on toes.

Make friends at work.  Go to lunch or coffee with a colleague. If you are invited to socialize after work, don’t hesitate to accept the invitation. This is often an opportunity to learn insightful information, as well.

Try to not get caught up in office politics or drama. Be a good listener but avoid conflicts if at all possible.

In some ways getting the job is much easier than being successful in it and in turn leveraging each workplace experience and opportunity toward the next step in your career. Just perform well and follow the advice here and you’ll be well on your way!

Source: Seinfeld, Trudy. “Insider Secrets to Success on Your First Job.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 25 June 2012. Web. 15 Dec. 2012.

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