How to Prepare for Your First Day of a New Job

Are you starting a new job soon and have the first day jitters?

The first day of a new job is usually the most memorable, stressful, and exciting days of your new position. On your first day, you meet your new coworkers, get your new workspace set up, learn more about the new company, etc. Along of all of these changes in your routine, you also are trying to make a good impression along the way. Your first day sets the foundation for all of your future interactions at work.

In this blog, we will help guide you on making your first day of work a success and less stressful.


Tip 1: Plan your commute before you leave for your first day

If you are going into your new place of work for your first day, make sure you know how to get there and how long it will take. Include time for parking, unexpected traffic, etc. Showing up for your job a few minutes early is much better than being late.

Try doing a “test commute” the day before to see about how long it will take you to reach your destination, park, and find where you need to be for your first day. We recommend adding a few extra minutes to your commute for your first day to ensure you are on time and ready. As you settle into your new routine, you will have a better estimation of how long things take on a day-to-day basis. 


Tip 2: Set yourself up for success

Get a good nights rest, eat a healthy breakfast, drink coffee from your favorite mug, or listen to an upbeat playlist during your commute. Anything you can do to help you get into a good mood and to have a great attitude helps!

Tip 3: Dress for Success

Dress up to make a good impression and ensure you’re meeting the company’s dress code. Try dressing a little more conservatively on your first day – you can make adjustments for the second day of work if needed. If everyone around you is dressed more casually, you can adjust your clothing choices on later days. You can also take off your tie or jacket later in the day if it seems appropriate.

You should dress a little more formally than you think may be necessary for your first day. It is usually better to be overdressed than to appear unprofessional. If you need ideas of what to wear, check out our blog.

Tip 4: Be prepared to ask questions

New hires have a lot to learn, and asking questions now will help you avoid mistakes in the future – even if you have been in your profession for a long time, it can never hurt to ask questions if you have any.

Some examples of questions to ask on your first day are:

  • Which tasks I should prioritize?
  • How often does the supervisor prefer to get updates?
  • How do people in the office prefer to communicate?
  • Are there any acronyms I should know?
  • When will I have evaluations and informal check-ins?

Finding out exactly what is expected of you early on will help you to acclimate to your new environment quickly and efficiently.


Tip 5: Get to know your coworkers

Making a good first impression and maintaining positive relationships can help make your hours spent at work more enjoyable.

Try having lunch with some of them on your first day. Having lunch with someone is a great way to make friends and find out more about the people you’ll be working with. You may even end up sharing a meal with your coworkers frequently, which can help you build strong professional ties to help you advance in your career.


Tip 6: Pay attention to your body language

Even when you are not talking, people can often can see you communicating through your body language. Your body language accounts for the majority of communication in the work place. Try to sit or stand up straight and avoid signs of nervousness or boredom such as touching your hair or face, tapping your foot or yawning.

Assess what you’re communicating to better understand how others may perceive you, and make any necessary adjustments.


Tip 7: Relax

It is understandable to make a few minor mistakes on your first day. If you start to feel nervous or stressed, try taking some long, slow, deep breaths and focus on being present.

If you make a mistake, remember that you’ll have a chance to do better tomorrow.


Tip 8: Put your cell phone on silent

Save being on your phone for during your lunch break or for after work. On the first day – you should be 100% present and in the moment.


Tip 9: Be available to your manager or supervisor

Your first day at work could be extremely busy. Between talking to your coworkers, getting essential training, and completing the onboarding process, be sure to check in with your manager a few times.

You can ask a few questions or just ask if they need anything. If your supervisor sends you an email or tells you to come to their office, respond immediately. This demonstrates both respect and enthusiasm to your new manager.


Tip 10: Say goodbye when you leave

When you’re ready to leave, thank your supervisor for hiring you and let them know that you enjoyed your first day.

It is a good practice to wish them a good night and tell them that you look forward to seeing them tomorrow after your first day.


The last thing to remember is that while the first day at a new job is very important, you shouldn’t be too hard on yourself if it doesn’t go flawlessly.


If you are looking for a new job, let us help you! Send your resume to