You got the job! Congratulations. All your research and hard work paid off.
For sure you want to be your best on the first day. So do what your Mom always told you: get plenty of sleep the night before, rise early, have breakfast and arrive on time. Today as most of us are all still working remotely, even for those who are new to the firm, you will log in as directed by the HR recruiter to be onboarded the first day.
Your HR representative will provide an orientation and introduce you to coworkers. Be as meticulous about your first day as you were about the interviews. Take a proactive approach beyond the HR tour and introductions. As career advisor David J. Parnell (http://davidjparnell.com/about-me/) counsels, the first day sets the tone with your coworkers for the rest of you career.
You will need that elevator pitch that you prepared for your interviews, this time to explain who you are and where you were before as many will ask about your previous job and employer. Be prepared to tell what you’ll be doing in the new job. When you introduce yourself, say how happy you are to be here. Smile! As life career and executive coach Mark Strong (https://markstrongcoaching.com) notes, first impressions matter. They’ll remember.
As you are introduced, assess the social landscape to determine who you’ll want to get to know to help you navigate the company. Get acquainted with office politics on day one. Sometimes power is elusive and not where you think it is. Certainly you want to understand the management hierarchy, who reports to who. But power can be spread out in an organization. Learning who controls departmental operations can impact your future success.
Try to connect with a fellow team member. He or she can help you learn the ins and outs of the organization and accelerate your ability to get up to speed quickly.
Don’t judge anyone or anything too quickly. Keep an open mind, listen and observe. This is your chance to get a glimpse of the Big Picture without obstructions or speculation.
Make sure you’re available to talk with your new boss on the first day. Don’t get so caught up in the HR process and company orientation that you neglect time to meet with your boss.
HR will (or should) take you to talk with your boss so you can chat about your role and be introduced to others in the department. This may be a hand-off from one zoom call to another in which you’ll connect with your boss and others he or she might want to join you.
In addition to learning more about what is expected from you, you can thank your boss for giving you the opportunity to be on the team.
At the end of your first day you can look back and recognize that this is your ikigai – your reason for getting up in the morning to go to work at your dream job.
It is a continuation of your journey and the beginning of your new career.
For more recommendations on what to do on your first day, see Aine Cain’s article in Business Insider, March 15, 2018, (https://www.businessinsider.com/what-to-do-your-first-day-of-work-2014-2#27-leave-with-a-good-attitude-27)