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5 Things Not to Do at a New Job

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Summary: There are five key things that you shouldn’t do when starting a new job.

Making it through the interview process to the point where you receive that hoped for job offer is not the end. Not only is the first bit of time at a new job a trial period, how you jump into your new job will determine your chances of future success with the new employer. Your new colleagues will be watching to see how well you will pull your own weight and get along with them.

Always put your best effort into a new job, even if it’s not what you imagined. You never know what opportunities may arise from the job. You may learn that you can easily transition to a different position that better fits your goals.

The trial period for any new job typically runs longer than just the first week. In some instances, a trial period may be six months long. So even if you are four months into your job, don’t make these mistakes.

  1. Show up late

Don’t be late the first day, the second day, the third week, or the fourth month. You should always arrive on time for work, especially when you are very new. Achieving this will require planning ahead to ensure you have adequate time to get to work with a few minutes to spare just in case. Practice leaving your home at different times to see how the time works out and taking different routes. You may learn that leaving extra early still results in you arriving at work at the same time had you left 15 minutes later. You may discover a route with less traffic or a route that is significantly shorter in distance. Traffic and/or transportation schedules will affect your commute greatly.

  1. Miss work without a phone call

Emergencies and sickness happen. That is life and there is nothing you can do to prevent it from happening eventually. However, just not showing up to work without a phone call, text or email explaining why you are not there is a big no-no. Ask for your managers and coworkers phone numbers during the first week of your new job so that you have a way of contacting someone in case of a future emergency. Notify them the moment you know you will not be making it into work, not five minutes before you should be clocking in. This makes you look careless, unprofessional, and unreliable.

  1. Personal business at work

When you get hired for a new job, they are expecting you to work. They aren’t hiring you so you can keep doing your side hustle of updating your blog or packaging your Etsy sold items for shipping. Keep your personal business for breaks and lunchtime and not during the workday. If you find yourself with free time, look or ask for something else to do that is work-related.

  1. Ignore instructions

It can be hard to change how we do things when we start a new job that has a different process but it is important to do all we can to follow their directions. While it is okay to look for ways or suggest things that can streamline or improve methods, take time to learn why they do things the way they do first. Ask questions and take good notes when you are given instructions so that you can be sure you are doing things the way they want them done.

  1. Stress out

The first week of a new job can be rough. There is so much to learn about the new methods the company follows and names of coworkers that it can be easy to stress out. You will make mistakes that first week, but by taking good notes and taking your time, you can limit those mistakes. Never be afraid to ask questions if something is just not clicking for you. Asking your co-workers questions is also a good excuse to get to know them and remember their names better. Take one day at a time and do your best at making each day better.

What is the worst mistake you made at a new job? Share your experiences with us in the comments below.

To learn more about what to do after receiving a new job, read these articles:


5 Things Not to Do at a New Job by
Authored by: Amanda Griffin