How to survive your first day of work and live to talk about it!


So you’ve just been hired, Congratulations! Now that the interview jitters are behind you, you’re probably eagerly anticipating your first day of work. No doubt, much like your first day of high school your mind is spinning as you try to envision every possible situation that could happen, both the good and the bad, during your first day on the job. Some questions you may be asking yourself are…

Do I have the right time and location?

Who will I be working with?

What will I be doing exactly?

Will I be able to do what’s expected of me?

Rest assured you’re not the only one who’s had questions on their first day! Just keep a few of these Do’s and Don’ts in mind


  1. Clarify the date, time, place and who you’ll meet and always arrive at least 10 minutes early.
  2. Find out if you need to bring specific info such as your SIN #, a blank cheque and/or photo ID.
  3. Know if you’ll need to wear any particular piece of clothing or equipment ahead of time. For example, steel-toed boots or black dress pants. As well, always bring a notepad and pen to write notes during training.
  4. Introduce yourself and smile when talking with supervisors and colleagues.
  5. Ask questions. If some of your skills are a bit out of date find out who could quickly get you up to speed. Flatter them into sharing by considering the importance of their knowledge.
  6. If you have some extra time on your hands offer to help out co-workers. You do have to be a bit careful because you don’t want to step on any toes so tread lightly!
  7. Turn off your electronic devices during working hours.


  1. Assume they already have all the information needed to complete your hiring paperwork.
  2. Pretend you know something you really don’t especially with regards to safety! It will backfire at a later point and you may be called out for it.
  3. Get too familiar with your new co-workers; you want to be social but first understand office politics before you end-up in a group with a “bad” reputation.
  4. Be too casual in your dress and behavior. It’s easier to dress down later once you’re more aware of the workplace culture.

For more info:

The first of two articles on covers tips to keep in mind for your first day on the job, while the second article covers proper dress attire for both office and retail environments. &

 This article by David Roos covers 10 easy to remember tips for your first day on the job, such as planning your commute and knowing when to listen and when to speak.


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