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You’ve prepped up on information about the company, wowed the bosses at the interview stage and been offered a role working for a new company. Congrats! It may seem like the hard part is over, but as “start day” nears, the nerves kick in and the restless nights begin.

What if they don’t like me? What if I don’t fit in? What if the work is too hard or I do a bad job at it?

It’s more than acceptable to get a little nervous before starting a new job, but if these are the thoughts running through your head just remember- your new employer knows you’re more than capable of doing the role otherwise you wouldn’t have been offered the position in the first place.

I joined Carrot Pharma mid-September and already feel like I’ve been here for months. So what’s the trick to settling in to a new company while getting the most out of your first month?

The night before:

Plan your journey before the day you’re due to start, do a trial run (at the time of day you’ll be travelling if at all possible), and leave yourself more than enough time. If travelling at rush hour, remember this can more than double your commute time. Packing your bag, picking your outfit and making your lunch the night before will make getting ready the first morning much less stressful. Treat yourself to a chilled evening, get an early night and remember to set an alarm (or three).

The first day:

Take notes, ask questions and remember to smile. The first day is always daunting but everyone’s been in your shoes before. You won’t be expected to remember everything you’re told today, but try to note down as much information as possible so you can come back to it later. Learn the names of your colleagues (or at least those nearest you or those you’ll be working with the most if you’re at a big organisation) as quickly as possible.

The first week:

Offer to make a brew within the first few days. This will help you interact with colleagues you’ve not yet spoken to. Set up meetings with members of your team so you can get to know them and how what they do will impact your own work, making it easier if you need to approach them with a question further down the line.

Try to find a good balance between getting to know your colleagues and talking too much about non-work related matters. You don’t want to come across as too shy, but at the same time you don’t want to be labelled as arrogant or cocky within your first week. If it’s not offered to you when you start, try to buddy up with a member of staff who you can speak to about the little things- where the stationary is kept, what the ‘unspoken’ office rules are etc. Try to overcome any weaknesses or challenges you had in your previous role as soon as possible.

The first month:

By the end of your first month you should start to feel like a part of the team, but don’t expect to know everything- this will take time. If you’re invited to any out-of-work socials or lunches make an effort to attend. Taking an interest in your colleagues’ lives out of work will show willing and give you something to talk about on your break. Sign up to your company’s newsletter to keep up to date with company news. And remember, keep asking questions:  you’re still a newbie and can get away with this for a while- better to ask the “daft” questions now than in a couple of months when everyone assumes you know how to do everything.

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