Your Career Journey: What to expect on your first day of work (Part 1)


Do you remember your first date? The nerves and anxiety that went along with it? If you are facing your first day of work (or thinking back to it), you probably have similar feelings.




noun: expectation; plural noun: expectations

a strong belief that something will happen or be the case.

Your first day of work will come with uncertainty, nervousness, and, hopefully, some excitement. Manage these emotions well and you will be on your way to turning your first day into your first career…

But, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is your career, so let’s unpack what you can expect on your first day of work. This post will deal with the preparation for your big day. In the second part we will look at the actual day. Stay tuned!

Preparing for your first day

To ensure you are able to manage well on the day, there is a little bit of prep work to do first. This article by Sami Allen suggests 11 things to do before your first day of work:

Few days before

  • Research your new company (and its people)
    • This is going deeper than what you did for your interview. Try find out some current statistics of the company. You can do a Google search to see if it has been in the news. You could also start following its Facebook or LinkedIn page.
    • Also try to get a better idea of who your team members and your boss are. This is where Facebook and LinkedIn are useful. But, keep in mind that they don’t know you well yet, so don’t be the creepy stalker ?
  • Prepare your elevator pitch
    • You will be introducing yourself to a lot of people on your first day. If you already have a good idea of what you will say, it will help to manage those initial jitters.
  • Do a dry-run of your route to work
    • Make sure you have a clear idea of what route you will be driving, but also do a dry-run at the time you will be leaving for work. This will help to have an idea of the traffic you could expect.
  • Pick your outfit in advance and have layers
    • Make sure you’re prepared for hot or cold weather by wearing layers. You don’t know what the temperature is like in the building during the course of the day.
    • You also don’t know when having an extra shirt might come in handy!
    • Also, try to determine the dress code before your first day.
  • Relax!
    • Easier said than done, but remember everyone at your company has been here before!

The day / night before

  • Pack your bag with all necessary supplies
    • This could include stationery, notebooks, laptop and a cellphone charger.
    • It might also be useful to ask HR what supplies you might need in advance.
  • Pack a basic brown bag lunch
    • Because you don’t know the setup of the kitchen at your new company, pack a basic lunch. Fruit and / or sandwiches will be perfect. Anything that doesn’t need cooling or reheating.
  • Bring a water bottle
    • Again, you don’t know what facilities are available. Having water on hand will help stave off those dry-mouth moments!
  • Double check your paperwork
    • Ask HR in advance what paperwork they need. If they sent any forms to complete before your first day, make sure you have packed them.
  • Set multiple alarms
    • If you’re worried about sleeping through your alarm, make sure you set a few. You could also ask a family member or friend to phone you an hour before you’re set to leave to make sure you’re up.
  • Have a relaxing conversation the night before
    • Prevent a sleepless night by having a casual conversation. Chat to someone you’re close with about nothing in particular and drift off…

In Conclusion

Finally, that’s it for today. Link in to the second part of this blog post here to learn about what you can expect on your first day!