Over this Bank Holiday I’ve hopped, skipped and jumped from London into a new city – BRISTOL.
Yes, who would’ve thought the country bumpkin, who’s so close with her family and tight with her friendship groups would get up and leave it all behind. Well I always knew I would – the time has to come right? While I’ve got no commitments and no one holding me back, I was adamant that after finishing my MA, I would go and work anywhere. I would joke with friends that if roles came up in Grimsby, Saudi or Latvia – I’d take them in a heartbeat. What’s life without adventure? So even despite applying for jobs in Qatar, it seemed that life was a little kinder, and I’ve found a new home in Bristol!
Tomorrow the sightseeing must come to an end though, as I finally start my new job. I’m nervous and apprehensive about what’s to come, I have the jittery butterflies because, I just want to be good at it. Starting a new job is never going to be easy I’ve gathered, especially if this is your first ‘real-world’ position. Even the most confident people can crumble after accidentally calling their manager ‘mum’.
So in preparing myself for my first day, I’ve been asking for the advice of friends and family – for them to impart their wise words on me. I got some terrible, entertaining and wise pieces of advice with I felt a duty to share. Here’s some top tips on how to have a successful first week (and beyond).
1) Introduce yourself to everyone
“Ashna, be cool, but not too keen either – get like a balance of cool, ‘waddup’ friendly approachable-ness, shake hands and just be suave like George Clooney, but in a girl way”
This is a sound piece of advice, introducing myself has become second nature now that I’ve graduated as a journalist (it’s kind of part of the job), but I do struggle with matching names to faces, in my last role I kept on confusing an Emma and a Lucy because they were both brunette and Irish – terrible.
2) Find your go-to colleague
“Find that person that’s super nice and you just click with in the office, but don’t cling to them like a bad smell. Just try and see where they go for lunch, bond with them over a cup of tea etc, that way they can be your go-to person for awkward questions”
Hmm good point, often its easy to identify that person you click with when you meet them, the most approachable one who is ok with hanging out with the new girl for a bit. They’re your way in to the ‘cool’ socials..
3) Do accept their invitations to socials
“Don’t be your unsociable (AHEM!) -self and decline going to hang out with them in favour of you hanging out in bed watching Made in Chelsea – clear your diary of stuff over the next few weeks and just say yes to going to drinks and socials – it’ll make you seem cool (I AM COOL!)”
Diary cleared. After-work drinks on Friday? Heck yes. Although you want to make sure they want you to come along first, fingers crossed there’s an invite.
4) Make lots of drinks
“Make tea, like, all the time. Tea/coffee Sandra? It will make you so popular on the news desk but allows you to practice getting names right too. And who doesn’t love a free drink when you’ve got a package due in in half an hour.”
I swear by this one. Making tea and coffee goes a heck of a long way, it’s a small gesture that some may find demeaning, but I think the offer of good drink-making skills are fool proof. I always have a page in the back of my notepad with everyone’s name and how they like their tea – the fact that you’ll remember their ‘order’ will automatically put you in their good books.
5) Be the best dressed on your first day
“Go in super smart and stylish then judge the dress code for your self for the rest of the time.”
Ahh the what to wear conundrum. I agree, if you go in very smart on your first day, you’re dressing to impress and give off an air of professionalism – that you’re ready to work and do your best. Also, who doesn’t feel good in a suit? Ofcourse this depends on the role, but after the first day you can suss out the tone of the office-wear to go for.
I don’t think these dashings of advice weren’t so bad after all. I certainly feel much calmer going into tomorrow. Hope this post helps you out when starting a new job – remember, social anxiety can be quashed!