You made it. You’re no longer a job seeker, you’re a new employee. Interviews are over, a job was offered and accepted and you start work on Monday. The show’s over, so you can kick back and relax the professional behavior just a bit.
Not so fast.
You obviously made a good impression during the interview process. Here are 11 ways you can back up the hiring decision.
1. Behave professionally. There’s a difference between being fun and being disruptive. You know the employee who spends more time in coworker’s offices, constantly talking off-topic and telling stories and jokes and rarely getting any work done? Don’t be that employee.
2. Dress appropriately. Ask about the office dress code and comply accordingly. This includes guidelines for facial hair, jewelry, shoes or other accessories.
3. Keep your work space professional. Artwork on the wall or family photos are fine as long as they aren’t abundant. But you can’t expect coworkers to take you seriously if your cubicle or office resembles a high school locker. If you aren’t sure of guidelines for office décor, ask.
4. Be on time. If your day starts at 9:00 am, plan to arrive by 8:45. Conversely, don’t repeatedly sneak out the door 15 minutes before your work day ends.
5. Don’t gossip. There’s a difference between getting to know your coworkers and talking about them. Learning an office’s work history is one thing; getting the dirt about what goes on is another.
6. Maintain a good performance record. Reasons that people are let go from a job can include frequent absences, missed deadlines, customer or coworker complaints or unprofessional behavior. Don’t make it easy for an employer to let you go.
7. Limit personal phone calls, emails and text messages. You might need to take or make personal calls at work. Everyone does. But texting friends throughout the day or spending a great deal of time on the phone aren’t appropriate.
8. Learn to take criticism. All employees have areas of improvement. Your supervisor’s role is to help your career development, which includes recognizing what skills you can improve on. Don’t take the feedback personally. Learn from it.
9. Do your job well. Whatever your duties and responsibilities, do them to the best of your ability. If you don’t know how to do something, ask for help, rather than making excuses for why you didn’t do it.
10. Treat everyone with respect. The administrative assistant deserves just as much respect as the director. Smile and say hello to coworkers no matter what their job title is.
11. Offer new employees guidance. When you’re an established staff member don’t forget what it felt like to be the newbie. Pay it forward when a new employee is welcomed to the group.
Most would agree that job searching is tough. Just remember that after you’re hired you can’t let your professionalism slide, or you’ll be back to the job search sooner than you wanted to be.