So you’ve just got your first job, huh?

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Your job does not bring you dignity, you bring dignity to your jobYou passed the nerve wrecking job interview and you are just about to start at your new job, what do you do? I will try to give you some pointers from managements view. I will relate this to my experience from sales and call centre life. I have been working with sales for almost 20 years, and I currently manage a call centre crew going on for the third year. So this article will be most useful for people with none or little education. Hopefully highly educated people just about to start a career might get something out of it as well. And if you happen to be management this is what you need to teach new employees.

Do never ever be late for your first day!
If you arrive late for your first day at work you are in big trouble, the very first impression on your new boss and your new co-workers are very important. You do not want to start this way.

Get a haircut and dress up
When you are at the job interview try to, if you can to spot what others are wearing and how they dress, you do not want to look like a slob compared to the other people around you. Get a new shirt or some new clothes; this will also help build your own self esteem. Try to look your best, but do not show up in a suit, unless you see such garments being used by others. Try not to overdo your style.

Empower yourself
Depending on how much time you have between being hired and the first day at work; try to buy some books about your new trade. If you start as a sales rookie, you will get training, but extra knowledge might give you a head start. Buy a book about sales techniques, and also magazines that are relevant to the products you will be selling. Try to learn as much as possible outside your job, about products, about selling. Go visit the competition as a customer and be an interested customer and try to pick up the things that impress you. In this matter you will learn about the products, prices and what the competition is doing. If you are starting to work in a call centre, buy a book about call centre strategies, in this way you will easily understand more about your new trade. Continue to learn and read about your new trade as long as you work there and remember you will never learn enough. Buy books about customer care. Do not learn products half way. Learn everything about your products, learn them inside out, test them and get to know them good; this knowledge will make your job so much easier. You work with humans, buy books about human behavior.

Be a winner
Have a winner attitude, do not go into a job just to settle with mediocre. Ask your manager what is expected of you if you want to succeed. Be curious about the best people, ask to learn from them and see them perform.

Be positive
Be a positive person, smile and try to be a team player. Be nice to your co-workers, management and most important always be nice to customers.

Work with goals
Talk to your manager about goals, what is a realistic goal for your job? When working with goals find time to evaluate along the way. Ask for a monthly follow up talk with your boss to discuss your progress.

Open your possibilities
Remember that one day you might want to quit your job, a good reference from this job will give you a head start on competition to the next job. I experience a lot of people that tend to forget this very part. If you slack around or worse if you get fired, it will be much harder to land the next job. A good reference from you manager might even replace education and you might find yourself in getting the next job instead of a better educated person with no experience. A good sales result might even land you more challenging and better sales jobs in the future.

Think long term
No employer will hire people that have had six jobs in two years. Try to stay at this job for two or three years at least. If you enjoy it stay for as long as you feel of course. This will be of great benefit in future pursuing of jobs.

Collect results
Good results in any job can get you far. Ask for monthly reports, quarterly reports, half year reports and yearly reports, and this report should contain your results compared to others, especially if you are a top 3 performer. You will be very valued by competition if you can provide such results.

Be humble and flexible and adjust
If you get feedback from management or co-workers understand what they are saying, and correct yourself if the feedback is negative. If you get a notice for arriving late for work, do not do that again. Why did you get this feedback and to what use is it for you? And if negative, what can you do to improve. By showing the ability to get negative feedback and changing your behavior you will experience strong goodwill from the people around you.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are
powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens
us.”- Marianne Williamson

And then smile, have fun and enjoy.

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2 Comments on "So you’ve just got your first job, huh?"

  1. Frode Heimen | April 4, 2009 at 7:22 am |

    Hi John.
    Thank you for the comment. I do agree that it is important to make yourself indespensible, but I have also experienced that when the indispensible people leave, someone else rise to the occation to take their place fast. It is almost like when the alpha male in a pack of wolves dies. The next one in rank will blossom.

  2. johnfmoore | April 4, 2009 at 1:28 am |

    Very good advice. The key at any stage of your career, whether you are at the beginning or nearing the end, is to make yourself indespensible.

    Do not be afraid to take risk and even to fail. Those that keep fighting and pushing ahead will go far.

    If you’re interested, check out my blog post on making yourself indespensible at:

    http://johnfmoore.wordpress.com/2009/04/01/take-charge-of-your-career-and-become-indespensible/

    John
    http://johnfmoore.wordpress.com

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