4 Things All Worker Newbies Should Know

Fresh out of uni and eager to bag that brand new job? Good for you; it’s tough competition out there. Still, when you take your first steps through the front door at your new workplace there are some things you should be prepared for.

You may be surprised by your first professional experience, and not necessarily in a good way.  But if you’re fully prepared for what lies ahead then you’ll be in a better position that most.

Excel – being good is just not enough

Trying to impress everyone down to your boss to your co-workers? It’s a hard balance. Your co-workers want to know that you’re good and dependable without finding you arrogant, so try and strike the right balance.

Ways to excel at work can include acting professionally, having a positive can-do attitude, taking initiative, speaking up when you have a great idea and being a good team player. Going above and beyond at work is something that will get you noticed early on. Be prepared to work longer hours than necessary and learn to say yes, even if what’s being asked of you isn’t in your remit. It will look good for you in the long run if you can be flexible and do as required.

Many jobs nowadays require workers to be more flexible and skill up in other areas to meet the work requirements. If you can show willing this will go a long way to proving yourself as an excellent employee.

Beware of the co-workers

Remember that co-workers talk. As a newbie, don’t feel too confident with your new best friends as they may not be who you think they are. They could be backstabbers who will take anything you say right back to the boss, so watch what you say at first until you truly know them – and maybe not even then!

The best practice in an office is to be professional with co-workers at all times. You never know who’s listening or who the information you divulge could get back to. Be a great co-worker and you shouldn’t run into many problems. Be cheerful, polite, helpful and definitely avoid getting into any idle gossip.

Rewards? Think again

Things have moved on since primary school. Good behaviour and hard work are no longer reliably rewarded, so don’t go into a job expecting constant praise. If you need a reminder why you’re in a role, check your bank balance; this is your motivation!

Yes, it’s nice to feel appreciated by your boss and co-workers. But sadly rewards in the workplace are few and far between, unless you’re working for a multimillionaire who takes the team for meals and exotic holidays as a thank-you!

Some companies may offer vouchers as an incentive for performing well or bringing in extra money, so you may find your workplace does offer some perks. But for most, such things are a pipe dream. Deal with it.

The boss

Your boss is pivotal in your new role. Like them or loath them, you have to learn to bear them and quickly! The boss decides what you work on and agrees to your holiday – so you want to keep on their good side, even if your brain tells you otherwise!

Work out what kind of manager they are, what they like in an employee and work this to your advantage. If they like their staff to speak up at meetings and initiate ideas, then be that person. Learn how to become that star employee from the outset and set your new career off to a flying beginning.

There are plenty more tips to keep in mind on a first day: smiling, being punctual and remembering people’s names are just the beginning. It’s your first step on the ladder, so don’t worry if you have a few setbacks in the first few weeks. Just swot up, scrub up and get going!

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