Let’s qualify that by saying that first days are seldom perfect. But you want it to run as smoothly as possible, and give you a chance to make a great impression on all the people you meet. We’ve put together a few do’s and don’ts for you to follow. They don’t guarantee that elusive perfection, but if you take heed, you’ll have a first day worth remembering.
If you’re not used to getting up early, you’ll need a couple of weeks for your body to get used to that early start. So go to bed and get up at the time you’ll need to when the job starts. That way you’ll be rested, used to the routine and won’t begin your first day by hitting that snooze button.
2. Plan in advance
First up, think about what you’re going to wear – check the office dress code, first – and make sure you’re well presented. At Enterprise, the dress code throughout your time with us will be formal. Generally, they say you should dress for the job you want, not the job you have, and it’ll certainly boost your confidence on your first day. Then plan your route, because you don’t want to misjudge train times, get on the wrong bus or drive around looking for somewhere to park. We ask you to arrive at 9am at our Warrington Head Quarters on your first day. If for whatever reason you are running late, please call in to let us know.
3. Bring the right equipment
There will be a lot to write down, so bringing a pen and pad will be handy for making those all-important notes! On your first day with us, bring your completed HR Pack, references, bank details, Degree Certificate and your Family info pack.
4. Be confident
No one feels supremely confident on their first day. At least, no one we know. So you’re not feeling anything different to the way all your new colleagues felt on day one. That said, there’s no need to show how nervous you are. You’re allowed to make mistakes, so be friendly and enthusiastic, and remember that you don’t have to know everything on your first day.
5. Talk to strangers
When you arrive, ask for a member of Recruitment who will direct you to where your fellow trainees will be waiting. Throughout the rest of your day, you’ll be introduced to people, of course, but if you bump into people in the kitchen, all you have to do is say “Hi” and tell them who you are. Even if you don’t end up working with them, they’ll be able to tell their own colleagues they met a friendly new person over the coffee machine.
6. Ask lots of questions
The first few weeks are the best time to ask anything, as everyone around you will understand how new it all is to you. In fact, they’ll be glad you’re showing an interest. Do your best to remember the answers, though, as picking things up quickly is a useful trait.
7. Keep quiet and listen
When you’re not saying hello or asking questions, listen to other people’s opinions. It’ll help you learn more about your new workplace and make some friends too.
8. Don’t run off when the bell rings
Don’t be a clock watcher on your first day. It can’t hurt to stay a little beyond your designated hours so that everyone sees that you’re more interested in getting the job done and less interested in disappearing for the evening. So don’t plan an evening out that starts just after 5.30. Stay for a while and make an impression instead.
We’d all love to have a perfect first day, and these tips could make the difference between an average one and a great one. If you’re still looking for a company where your first day could be as memorable as the ones that follow, take a look at Enterprise’s graduate jobs for management trainees.