It’s Opening Day for Major League Baseball. Being from Cleveland, this is probably the most optimistic day of the year. Winter is (usually) coming to a close, and we’ve heard nothing but positive things from Spring Training about the Cleveland Indians. Unfortunately, this optimism and excitement is usually temporary, as reality sets in and many realize they may have set expectations a little too high.
Regardless, this optimism and excitement is important for fans to have. Opening Day is a chance for a new beginning. The slate is clean for the year, and there is nowhere to go but up. As fans, we only get to experience this feeling of a new beginning once. It’s important that you cherish it and enjoy the moment for what it is.
Like Opening Day, your first day on the job is a moment and feeling you can only experience once. You begin with a clean slate and it’s up to you to decide how you will experience it. Like any MLB team, you want to set the tone early in your new position.
On you opening day on the job, you will experience a lot of emotions and have a lot of new information thrown your way. It is important to be able to navigate this roller coaster of a day as effectively as possible. Follow these five tips on your opening day and you will be able to get of to a strong start on your new job.
Show Up Early
Being late for the first day on the job is a surefire way to set a negative tone for your new position. Not only will it leave a bad impression on your superiors and peers, but it will also provide unnecessary stress on your mind throughout the day. You should to be focused on acclimating to your new environment, and not focused on what you could have done to get to work earlier.
The best way to make sure you show up to work early on the first day is to practice your routine. Before you start your new job, find a day where you can go through your full morning routine and commute. Time yourself on how long it takes and then set your alarm 15-30 minutes before that time. Yes 30 minutes might sound like a lot, but knowing you will be at work on time is one less stress that you do not have to deal with on what will be a hectic day.
Showing up early for your first day is the perfect time to begin organizing your working situation. Humans naturally like to procrastinate menial tasks like organizing a desk or setting up an email account. However, getting this done on your first day will give you one less task to get done when you actually start to get busy.
Getting organized first thing when you show up will also demonstrate initiative on your part. It shows that time is valuable to you and that you want to set a positive tone. Your superiors and peers will love to see you are ready to go from day one.
Of all the things to do on the first day, this is probably the most important thing. More than likely you will be hit with more new information than you can handle on your opening day. Make it your goal to take in as much of it as you can. Superiors usually do not like to repeat themselves, and they will be thrilled to see you remembered what they told you.
To help your memory, take a lot of notes. It is always a plus to able to consult your notes for answers to questions rather than waste someone else’s valuable time. Also stay off your cell phone, you will be too busy on your first day to have any time to check text messages or Facebook. All your focus needs to be on acclimating to your new position.
Prepare and Ask Questions
When you are listening, you should be practicing what is called active listening. Active listening involves providing feedback to the speaker when they are speaking to you. One of the best ways to be a good active listener is to ask questions.
Asking questions tells a person you are engaged and interested in the subject matter. It is important you ask the most questions you can on your first day. Chances are you will receive a lot of attention on your first day that you will not get down the line. While you have all this attention, it is the perfect time to get any questions you might have answered before people’s attention shift.
Talk to Peers
If you are going to be working with your team for the foreseeable future, you might as well start to get to know them on the first day. By talking to your peers you will be able to gain valuable insight on company culture and how people operate on a day to day basis. You will also be able to begin to establish positive working relationships that could prove to be valuable in the future.
Always be friendly when approaching new peers. Having a good first impression is a very powerful tool when establishing trust among co-workers. Perhaps the best way to leave a good first impression is to find a commonality with your new peer. People are naturally drawn to others with similar interests and backgrounds and it is a good way to establish an immediate bond.