The new year brings a lot of fresh beginnings. This is especially true in the workplace, as many new-hires join the team after the holidays. Starting a new job can be highly intimidating and daunting. This is not only due to the pressure of learning new job duties, company policies, and skills, but also because you suddenly have a whole new crop of coworkers to meet and impress. While there is no guaranteed way to make people immediately approve of you, there are ways to increase the chance of them doing so. To start, follow OFFSITE’s guide on how to make a good first impression at work.
Go in with a Smile
It may feel strange to walk into a room smiling, but doing so can make all the difference when it comes to first impressions. Walking into the office with a warm, sunny disposition will allow you to show your new colleagues that you are friendly, non-threatening, and kind. For each new person you meet, be sure to give them a big smile, eye contact, and a handshake. If smiling so much on your first day feels uncomfortable, realize how much more uncomfortable your new coworkers would feel being introduced to someone with a stone cold frown on their face.
While looks are certainly not the most important aspect of a person, they do play a part in shaping first impressions. Even if you are the smartest and most hardworking person in the world, showing up to your first day of work in sweatpants and with a messy hairdo can immediately lead your coworkers to believe that you are unprofessional and unqualified. Instead, make sure that you are proud of your appearance on your first day. This doesn’t mean you need to go get your hair and makeup professionally done, it just means to look and dress professionally and sharply.
Additionally, it is essential to dress appropriately for the specific job and the office environment. Showing up in a suit and tie while everyone else is wearing casual clothing will make you stand out and may make people think you do not yet belong. For more information about this, check out OFFSITE’s guide to dressing appropriately for a company here.
Strike Up a Conversation
The most essential part of making a good first impression is creating a personal connection. In order to do so, you must have the confidence to strike up conversations with your new colleagues. Start by simply saying hello and asking them their job title and their role in the company. Then, move on to your new job title, your past experience, and what you are excited about when it comes to your new venture.
Once the basics have been covered, try to find some common ground that allows you to connect with the individual. Maybe you have a similar degree or have a hobby in common. Whatever the connection may be, establishing something you have in common during your first impression can lead to a strong relationship. If your first conversation goes well and you feel comfortable with the person, be sure to propose a future conversation or meeting. This could be in regards to them giving you an office tour or telling you the ins and outs of the office’s practices.
While making a good first impression to an office full of new people can seem scary, following these tips and being yourself will have you fitting in in no time.