Stay informed! Visit the SA Department of Health's website for COVID-19 updates:

#TheStruggleIsReal - How to survive your first day of work

My Job
My Job

Are you ready to join the wonderful world of adulting? Highlights of this epic stage of your life include: paying rent, setting alarms at five-minute intervals so that you actually get to work on time, crying when you fill up your tank with petrol, spending all your money on coffee, complaining that you spend all your money on coffee, buying avocados, paying for a gym membership that you never use, building a good credit score and working to make that paper. 

Scared? Don’t be! You haven’t heard the other highlights, like: financial freedom, independence, forming professional relationships, building new skills, expanding your mind, gaining incredible confidence in yourself, travelling and growing. Sounds good, right?

Now, before you take the leap and dive into the world of adulting with all its ups and downs, challenges and surprises, you need to survive the first day of work! From deciding what to wear and remembering where your desk is, to learning the ropes and making a good impression – your first day at a new job can be absolutely terrifying. 

No worries though, we are here to guide you through this stressful rite of passage! Here are five quick tips to surviving your first day of work:

1       Open your mind, yo! You are entering a new environment, with new processes and new people. By not pushing your expectations and assumptions into these initial interactions, you will find it easier to get into the vibe.

2       Coffee, like oxygen, is life! Figuring out the coffee sitch and getting organised during your first day are just as important as understanding the onboarding process. Other than the obvious dose of caffeine, going to grab a quick coffee in the pause area or coffee shop presents a chance to network with your new colleagues.

3       Do not ‘fake it till you make it’! Don’t compensate for your lack of confidence with overconfidence. No one expects you to know everything on your first day, and you learn and grow faster when you seek real understanding, ask questions, and petition for help. You will really make it by acknowledging the skills and experience of your colleagues.

4       Create boundaries! You don’t want to be asked to work every Sunday morning. Mix up your response times to co-workers’ or supervisors’ emails and texts on weekends. Sometimes you could reply right away, other times you could wait a few hours, or even answer the next day. When you’re responsive but unpredictable, they won’t develop crazy expectations of you. It’s all about balance!

5       Start a 30/60/90-day plan. Goal setting sounds like a lot of admin, but if it’s done correctly, it can be very helpful. Create goals for the first 30, 60 and 90 days on the job. It can be anything from making new friends to developing new skills. This plan will help you grow towards something and it will also make you far more proactive in your job.

Hold on tight, friends – it’s going to be a crazy ride. But it is so, so, so worth it.

Stay informed! Visit the SA Department of Health's website for COVID-19 updates: