The month of September, the first month of the 13 months Ethiopian calendar, is the first for many things for many people. Resolutions are made, new directions are devised, and in some cases new jobs are pursued. It is both exciting and hard to face the first day in a new job. It is exciting, as starting fresh, with a clean slate helps to establish oneself in a certain way. The fear, on the other hand, is not only about the job to be done, but actually the lack of context and what to expect from future colleagues and co-workers.
It is always good to make good first impressions, and lasting ones if possible. At the end of the day, those same new colleagues you are meeting on the first day of your arrival will stay there and the positive and smooth interaction on the onset is deemed important. In order for our first day interactions to be as smooth, positive and worthwhile as possible, the following few pointers could help on how to accessorize.
Talking about first impressions, the way we are dressed plays a very important part in making them. I remember myself being from both ends – the welcoming and the newcomer – where I have seen not very thought through attires. Some years ago, a friend of mine shared her experience of a new director of a somehow big organization, who came with jeans and sneakers. At the end of his introduction, people could only remember not his name or anything else he said but his somehow surprising appearance. The idea of dressing appropriately is all about appropriate for the working environment. Starting a new job at the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia should tell for itself that it is a suit and tie space. Until one decides and sees for herself/himself what the organizational culture is when it comes to dressing, it is advised to dress formal, bearing in mind the risks of not appearing overdressed, or under dressed. Well-presentation of one-self, in many cases is defined by what one dresses. So, looking smart, but not too flashy, with too much make up and jewelry is appreciated.
It is always respected if you arrive on time, or even a bit earlier so that you won’t be stranded on the road during your new commute for your first day to work. Know your surrounding, where you are taking your transportation – whether it is bus, taxi, Bajaj, or the new Addis light-train. This makes a good and lasting impression as you want among your new colleagues.
Smile is the best accessory, they say. It can take you long way, to building a friendly aura around your presence, which will definitely be cherished by all around you. There is nothing that can go wrong from smiling than making yourself noticed from across the room and remain in the minds of the new colleagues.
Lastly, you will surly be given a lot of information on your first day at work – that is called induction – by your manager, supervisor and colleagues. Some are technical; some are detailed that you can only master their existence through the process of working. In any case, get enough sleep the night before, drink your coffee or what you do to help you focus on the presentations, listen actively and ask questions. Taking notes helps at times, please don’t forget to bring your notebook – sometimes, the induction package have a notebook and pen, but not to take chances.