Michael asked on Yahoo Answers:
I start my new job tomorrow. I’m nervous and not at all sure what to expect. Any advice?
Starting a new job can be intimidating, at least that is always the case for me. Here are some common questions we have been seeing from hired members about to start their new jobs:
What should I wear?
Your employer should have given you this information prior to your start date. If they did not, think back to your interview and try to remember what everyone was wearing. You don’t want to show up on your first day in ripped jeans when everyone else is in suits! Remember, it is better to be overdressed than under-dressed. If you aren’t exactly sure and don’t have a uniform, step up your game a little. Your first impression with your boss and coworkers is important and you don’t want to come across as a lazy slob.
However, I would recommend against taking this too far. You don’t want to be remembered as the weird guy who showed up in a tux on his first day.
Where should I park?
If you don’t know whether or not there is an employee parking lot, your best bet would be to part in the back of the parking lot. You want to leave the spots in the front for customers. If you are nervous about this, it’s okay to call your supervisor and ask.
How am I expected to remember everyone’s name?
No one will blame you if you can’t remember each name of every person that works with you. However, make it a point to memorize the name of your supervisor and at least three people you work closest with. Of course, if you are working somewhere were name tags are required, this shouldn’t be an issue :).
If you are determined to get everyone’s name down by the first week, turn it into a game. Pick an attribute of your coworker and weave it into their name. For example – blonde Brandy or hyper Hank. Taking notes is always a safe way to try to remember the difference between Geoff and Jeff. Just make sure you don’t write anything mean in there, you never know when you will misplace your notepad!
What should I bring?
This is important, especially on your first day. You will want to make sure you bring the required identification for filling out your new employee paperwork. This includes a school ID, driver’s license, passport, Social Security card and/or birth certificate. Most employers will require you bring at least two of these items. To make sure you have exactly what you need, you should call your employer. If they have mailed you anything, make sure you give it another close look, as there may be information about your first day and what exactly you need to take with you.
Also, since it’s your first day and you can’t re-make a first impression, breath mints wouldn’t hurt!
What if I’m late?
Two words: DON’T BE! Your best bet would be to test out the route from your house to your new job before the big day. Even if it didn’t take you that long when you went on the interview, the time may increase drastically depending on the time of day. Do your best to get there around 10 minutes early. This is your first chance to show them that they made a great decision in hiring you and that you are taking this seriously.
The best advice I can really give you is to tell you to “just ask.” If there’s something you’re not sure about before you go in, pick up the phone and call. If there’s a step in the job you aren’t sure of, stop the training and ask for more detail. You won’t look dumb, you’ll look attentive and determined to succeed.