During your first graduate job, it’s natural to want to impress. However, you may be brimming with worry about what to expect on your first day. If you have not been in a professional workplace before, starting out with little experience in your sector can be terrifying. You have no idea what you’re supposed to be doing, how the industry works, and essentially, who your new colleagues are going to be.
If you have recently been offered a graduate job, you may be wondering what to expect in the first few days and weeks. Here are some top tips that you may like to take on board:
Start looking at your options now
If you’re set to graduate next year or perhaps haven’t even thought about applying for a graduate job, it’s well worth considering your options.
Make note that most grad jobs are advertised during the summer months, just before graduation season, so start looking at job listings between the months of May-September to get ahead of the game. Inspiring Interns, however, is a graduate recruitment agency that advertises jobs throughout the year, so check out their jobs board now to discover jobs in all sectors.
If you haven’t studied for a degree, you can also stay on the lookout for non-graduate schemes that may hire you based on your work experience and skillset.
Here are some top tips on what you should be doing right now to prepare for a graduate job:
Beat imposter syndrome
Imposter syndrome is a very common feeling amongst many new graduates. Have you ever felt as though you’re a ‘fake’ even though you have achievements to prove your skills? This is otherwise known as ‘imposter syndrome’ and relates to feeling unable to live up to the expectations of a responsibility that you have.
You’re not the only one.
Tackling imposter syndrome isn’t easy, but it can be done.
Firstly, you need to separate your feelings from the facts. Just because you may believe something doesn’t mean it’s true. Secondly, remember all that you have achieved. There may be days when you’re full of self-doubt and struggle to see the value in your work. During these times, think back to any rewards you have received and acknowledge your past accomplishments to give yourself a much-needed confidence boost.
Rest assured, it can be overcome, but it may take a little self-talk and motivation to snap out of it. Always ask for assistance when you need it and don’t dwell on small mistakes. You’re only human after all.
Communicate with your boss
If you have never had a boss before, you may be confused as to how to communicate and act around them. Essentially, they are the individual that oversees your progress and makes crucial decisions, so making a good impression truly counts.
It’s natural to feel overwhelmed communicating with an individual more senior than you, but at the end of the day, they are only human – just like you. It may also be a good idea to learn how they best communicate whether it be via email, phone, or face-to-face meetings if you require support from time to time.
Stay out of office politics
Regardless of where you work, office politics will always exist in a communal space. Although you may be focused on the salary, workload, and nature of the role, those you work alongside will have a major influence on your day-to-day working life.
While you may be aware of friction and disagreement between employees, it is best to stay out of it and have a neutral perspective. This ensures that you will never get caught up in other people’s dilemmas and stay focused on your own responsibilities, as opposed to those of others.
Do you struggle to say ‘no’ to people? If so, now is the time to start setting boundaries. While you may wish to showcase that you are a hard-working, dedicated, and trustworthy individual, it’s essential to prioritise your own health and well-being.
It’s easier to set boundaries with individuals we have known for many years, but you may believe that the professional workplace is not the environment to do so – but this is quite the opposite. You are entitled to have your own boundaries in place based on the tasks you can realistically manage, how you are spoken to, and even any overtime that is requested of you.
It is much easier to set ground rules from the get-go, rather than going back on expectations later down the line.
Effective time management is key to staying productive in your first job. In doing so, you’re more likely to successfully manage your daily workload and reduce your stress levels. Here are some top tips to take on board:
No one is going to expect you to know everything on your first day at work, so don’t be afraid to ask questions if you need assistance. Not only does it show interest, but you’ll be able to iron out any issues as soon as possible so you’re able to remain focused and productive. This also means that you’ll be less likely to make mistakes and much more confident in your approach.
Walking into any new environment can be daunting. You’re in unfamiliar surroundings and in the company of a bunch of people that you don’t know.
Remember that you don’t need to make friends on the very first day. It takes time to build solid relationships and as you’ll be working with these individuals in the coming months and years, you’ll have plenty of time to build connections.
Discover who you have most in common with, and even reach out to ask for a helping hand from those in your team to form bonds.
Do be wary of sharing too much information about your personal issues or any other comments or jokes that may come across as unprofessional.
If you’re still on the lookout for a graduate job or internship in London, check out Inspiring Interns job board today and register!
Inspiring Interns is the UK’s leading graduate recruitment agency, connecting the best graduates with top companies worldwide. We work with everyone from the most innovative start-ups to the biggest multinationals, including Virgin, Lloyds, and M&C Saatchi Mobile. Please take a look at our website for the latest graduate jobs vacancies and careers advice.
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