Congratulations! You landed the new gig and you are ready to start. Here are a few things you can do to make sure you are quickly aligned with your new team and accepted into the company culture.
- Dress appropriately. Hopefully you noticed the company’s dress code during the interview process. Match your manager’s dress or if you are unsure, wear a suit the first day or two while you observe those around you. It’s better to remove a jacket or tie than to show up underdressed. Don’t try to make any fashion statements at this stage; your job at the moment is to assimilate.
- Be early. Arrive early for the first week, and be one of the last to leave. Official hours may be from 8:00 to 5:00, but if your teammates typically work until 5:30, follow their lead. In your first few days you are being evaluated by your new boss and your team, and you don’t want to give the impression that you are a slacker or a clock watcher.
- Show respect and attention to detail. Your first days on the job will involve learning the company policies and processes. Be attentive and take notes. If fellow workers and managers are taking time to educate you, show respect and document their advice. And since you might experience information overload during this time, your notes will help jog your memory later on.
- Observe and ask questions. Notice what others are saying and doing. Ask questions about the company culture or any process that is new to you. This will help you avoid stepping on any toes or offending someone unnecessarily.
- Share, challenge, suggest improvements…but tread carefully. Successful managers and teams want to improve. If you see areas where you can offer a suggestion, ask your manager when it would be appropriate to make a recommendation and then share your ideas at that time. However, be sure that you understand the business rationale behind established procedures before suggesting a change. Don’t risk being labeled a “know it all” by speaking too soon or to the wrong person.
- Have fun, be yourself and smile. Show energy and enthusiasm in everything you do. Adding positive energy to the work environment and showing enthusiasm is a quick way to gain friends and impress management.