Congratulations! You are now a working and contributing member of society. Unfortunately, having a job doesn’t mean you mindlessly collect a paycheck at the end of each month. You have to earn it and, oddly enough, work for it. So here are a few tips to ensure you keep your job.
More likely than not, you will have some type of training in the beginning of your new job. The way you approach that training can make or break you as an employee. It will not only be the first impression of your work ethic for your employer, but it will also determine how you perform your job from there on out. Employers do not want to spend the first month after you complete training correcting everything you do wrong because you didn’t pay attention.
We’re not saying you aren’t allowed to make a mistake, because we all do that, but you never want your supervisor to feel like a continuous recording of correcting your same mistakes. They expect you to learn the correct protocol and implement it. During training, be engaged and be diligent. Take notes if you have to, but take in and retain everything you can.
A statement you should never say while on the clock. The key to being a productive and successful employee at work is to stay busy. When you find yourself getting “bored” at work, it’s never okay to pull out your phone and start scrolling. There is always something to do in order to keep busy. Find a broom and sweep, pick up a rag and wipe off counter tops, organize the contents of the desks.
Being a hard worker is hard; but it is what will make you indispensable as an employee. If you’ve organized everything you can and the whole place is spotless, ask your supervisor what else needs to be done. If they say nothing for now, walk to the next department or supervisor and ask if they need help.
While in an entry level position we often have a tendency to be timid and passive. In a lot of cases it is best to know your role and to not over step boundaries, but when done in the proper way, you can certainly pitch your ideas for improvement.
If you think of an easier way of doing something, write down why and how the innovation will make things in the workplace faster, easier, more effective, etc.
Once you have it all planned out, ask your supervisor for an appointment to meet with them and politely present your idea. They may or may not implement it, but at least they will know you care about the company and are interested in the work you are doing. You will also learn a lot about what goes in to making changes in the workplace, not to mention it will make the time go by more quickly.
Presentation is Everything
The same etiquette rules you followed during the job search still apply after you land the job. This means that just because you got the job doesn’t mean you get to wear your bed head and crabby attitude to work every morning. If anything, this means you need to amp up your attitude and appearance. Continue to dress neatly and professionally. If you have a uniform, make sure it is ironed with your shirt tucked in and your hair combed and neat. If you don’t have a uniform, continue to dress every day like it’s an interview.
When you feel good about the way you look, you are more productive and have a better attitude. So wake up a little earlier if you have to and make the extra effort. Getting up earlier will help you not be so grouchy by the time you make it to the office.
A Precursor to the Next
So maybe the job you landed isn’t exactly your dream position. That’s OKAY! If you ask someone over 40 they will tell you the job they currently have isn’t exactly their dream job either. However, the job you have now is always a precursor to your next job. So even if you are miserable folding clothes or brewing coffee all day, the way you perform doing it will follow you to your next position.
Be mindful that everything is a stepping stone and sometimes you have to start in the valley to get to the peak. Continue to work hard, set goals, and always make strides to get to where you want to be.
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