You have landed your dream job. All of the hard work and preparation that was invested into the interviewing process has paid off. Your first day is around the corner and you have the enthusiasm of a 5 year-old on Christmas morning! Don’t let this enthusiasm overshadow the opportunity you have on your first day to learn some critical information about your new opportunity, the corporate culture, and what is expected as you move forward in your new career. Below are a few questions that I suggest candidates consider prior to their first day on their new job.
- Do you know the dress code & how long the commute will take? One of the first things that I remind candidates prior to starting a new job is to be sure they know the dress code; first impressions are very important! If you are unsure, it’s better to be over-dressed than under-dressed on your first day. Also have you done the commute during a normal work day commuting times? Your drive (or train ride) for interviewing process may have occurred after the morning rush or in the middle of the day, so it may take you longer to get there during standard commuting times. Be sure to plan in advance because you don’t want to be that person who arrives late on their first day!
- What can I expect from reviews and evaluations? Whether or not your manager or company has a formal review policy, your first day in the office marks the countdown to your first sit-down to evaluate your performance. Ask what is to be expected of you and how the process works and note any specific goals and dates. You may have asked these questions during the interview process, but it’s best to reconfirm now to avoid any surprises
- Is there anything I should know about office politics or procedures? Ask your new manager privately about the dynamic of the people you’ll be working immediately with. For example, who is the best person to ask for help or advice? Or who on your team would be the best mentor? Also, find out if there are any unusual or unique processes that you should be aware of that have surprised other people when they began working for the company.
- If your position is replacing someone, ask what happened to the person in the position prior to you. Asking casual questions about your predecessor can provide some valuable insights regarding past histories and potential pitfalls. Ask how other members of the organization will receive you and how you can best become a positive contributor to the team.