|Martin Yate CPC
NY Times Bestseller
Professional Resume Services
Starting your first job means crossing that final bridge to adulthood, and you’ve finally made it. You’ve got plans for your life, and you’ve got student loans to pay off, so before you even step into the office you’re probably already thinking about your first raise and promotion. But while eye of the tiger is a good thing, you should fight the urge to reinvent the corporate world immediately.
Build A Firm Foundation For Your Career
Professional growth is about building skills and making allies over the long haul, not about conquering the world on day one. Take it from my colleague and career expert Valentino Martinez who specializes in the student-to-professional transition: “Your first job is a learning experience. It isn’t about pay,
|For more advice for emerging professionals,
check out “Knock Em Dead Secrets & Strategies
For First Time Job Seekers” available on Amazon
status, or title. Focus on how your first job will establish a solid foundation for where you want to be in ten years.”
All too often people join a company and, in an effort to make a powerful first impression, achieve the opposite. Your behavior when you first start work will determine your acceptance by management and by the team, your tenure, and your ultimate success with the company.
Make Allies Not Assumptions
Never assume anything when you start your first job, and don’t try to change the world before you know the way to the restroom. Your first task is to master your job’s responsibilities and get to know the people you work with, as well as the people whose work is affected by yours. Remember people’s names, and go out of your way to smile and introduce yourself to everyone. Don’t overlook clerical staff; it isn’t courteous, and allies here can always repay your cordiality down the line. In short, learn the job, the organization, and the people. Work extra hours as necessary without complaint, and form good relationships inside and outside your department.
Ask for advice and listen closely to feedback on your performance—you are new to this and pretty much everyone wants you to succeed. Give thanks to everyone who assists you, and show even more appreciation for their time and input with brief follow-up notes.
If The Paychecks Don’t Bounce, They Can’t Be Crazy
As you get acclimatized over the first few days, you will begin to see the flow of work. Whatever the apparent madness you see in the early days at your first company, there is usually a sound method behind it. The paychecks don’t bounce, so the company’s employees and officers must be doing something right. With this in mind, don’t comment on how things should be done, because no one will listen and some will take offense that “the newbie is a know-it-all.” That just encourages some wise-ass to put you in your place. Don’t be the guy who makes everyone feel like you were hired because they weren’t doing anything right and you’re here to fix it.
You need time to get to know the company, its services, and its people. In turn, those people need time to get to know you. If you arrive and immediately begin reinventing the company, it will be taken as arrogance and a slap in the face, not an opportunity to bow before a new and awesome deity! No one wants to hear your ideas until they know if you are a talker or a doer. So don’t rush into things. You’ve got a long career before you, and plenty of time to reinvent the wheel. You’re going to have to establish yourself before you can move up, so take the time now to build solid foundations. For more insights on how to make a great impression and get ahead on your first job, check out Knock Em Dead – Secrets & Strategies For First-Time Job Seekers.