Management Mistakes

Management Mistakes: Part 1

Our CEO, Barry Whelan, featured in this month’s edition of ShelfLife magazine talking about the mistakes managers make. See what he had to say below:

Securing great talent is harder than ever in today’s competitive market, so it is vital management don’t alienate staff by adopting the wrong attitude or techniques.

Here, Excel Recruitment’s Barry Whelan outlines 12 of the top mistakes to avoid:

When candidates come through Excel, looking for a new role, we zone in on their ‘reason for leaving’. We want to understand completely why the candidate wants to move job, so that we can find the right new job for them. One of the reasons that comes up consistently in the top five is frustration with a manager or poor management. Over this month and next, I will be outlining 30 of the top bad management mistakes that drive an employee out the door.

For all those managers out there interested in improving their ability to manage others, take heart in that you’re only human. I know I for one have made every single one of these management mistakes at some point or another in my career. Let’s start with my personal favourite!

1) Be inconsistent and unpredictable:

This manager likes to keep people on their toes by being totally inconsistent in terms of communication (both style and content), expectations, feedback and long-term vision for the organisation. All the employees’ nerves are shot from playing workplace Russian roulette!

2) Move the goalposts:

This manager changes their expectations every time you meet with them. They give out to employees for not meeting the new expectations they have just told them about and for instead wasting all their time trying to meet the expectations they set last month. They look for constant validation!

3) Involve themselves in every decision:

This manager does not let any decision be made without weighing in, no matter how small, and no matter how long it will be before they have time to review the matter. They are hands on…no problem is too small that needs their faultless problem solving!

4) Correct small mistakes to demonstrate how clever they are:

The classic insecure micro manager will review and approve emails or business correspondence, then change their mind over inane word choices. They will randomly ‘correct’ already correct grammar or spelling on documents given to you to sign in pen, ensuring that even once you understand it’s correct, it has to be re-printed!

5) Refuse to give any feedback:

The manager who won’t give any feedback, either positive or negative, ever, but will overreact completely when people fail to correctly understand what they want!

6) Make everyone run on their schedule:

They will be 20 minutes late to every meeting, leave early, and then get angry when a minor decision is made without having their input. They insist on being the final decision maker for every aspect of every project, but then don’t make decisions in a timely manner; instead waiting until the eleventh hour and making everyone scramble to get the work done.

7) Spend time on less important things so that they can ignore more important things:

The manager who insists on doing tasks someone else could do while unmade decisions pile up on their desk to the point of nearly halting anything getting done.

8) Refuse to let people do their jobs, then give out to them for it!

How many times have we met candidates who were hired for a job that they were not allowed to do! I met a graduate the other day who was hired as an accounts assistant but ended up selling products on the showroom floor.

9) Treat people the same, regardless of their experience:

A good manager must adjust to their audience, don’t treat 10+ years experienced employees the same as those with less than one year! This is a sign that the manager does not have the confidence (or experience) to manage experience.

10) Don’t learn new skills or improve existing ones:

This boss feels, why should they learn stuff when they have people to do stuff! They fail to learn even the most elementary technology like email attachments, making their staff do that in addition to their own work.

11) Only communicate the trivial:

This manager can’t deliver big news that is in any way negative. They communicate on small, insignificant things and don’t tell anyone about challenges in the business, changes in process or even positive news.

12) Build a sense of importance by talking about how busy they are all the time:

This manager constantly tells their team how busy they are, how they had to catch up by working all weekend. They have to remind everyone how they are busier and thus work harder than everybody else. Often these are the same people who talk excessively at work.

If you wish to read the full ShelfLife Magazine February 2022 Issue, you can do so by clicking here.

Barry Whelan, CEO Excel Recruitment

New Year, New Career? 10 tips on how to reach your career goals in 2019

Here at Excel Recruitment we always see a sharp spike of people ‘looking at their options’ in January and this year is no different. New Year is always a great time to take stock and reflect on your goals for the year ahead, particularly your career goals . Whether you’re actively looking for a move or just want to reach your full potenial in your current job, CEO of Excel Recruitment Barry Whelan serves up 10 tips to help you make the most of your career in 2019.

January is a great time to assess your career and take steps to accentuate it. With an economy full of opportunity, why not focus the next few months on making 2019 your most successful career year ever?

Boost your essential job skills
There is probably a reason you were recruited to your current position; perhaps it is your management skills or selling ability. No matter what is the case, make an effort to ramp up the skills that make you good at what you do. You can take courses, attend seminars, or pursue a professional qualification to advance your existing talents.

Volunteer more often
Stepping up in your job really does set you apart from the pack. If you have shied away from volunteering in the past, make the coming year one in which you offer to take on more responsibility. It’s a great way to expand your horizons and send management the message that you are not afraid to offer to help and try new things.

Develop a skill that no one else at your company has
Why not make yourself a key player within your company? This will set the stage for a promotion – or at least give you job security. You may not be the only person at your company who is a good merchandiser or strong negotiator. However, if you work on developing a skill that no one else at your company seems to have, you will make yourself indispensable.

Get more feedback
Feedback can be tough; you don’t only get to hear the positive, but obviously also the negative. Nevertheless, it is hard to assess your own performance when you are deep in deadlines and tasks. If you want to take your career to an exciting new level in the coming year, you need to make a point of pursuing ongoing feedback from both your manager and peers. Figure out where you are excelling and where there is clear room for improvement. The more insight you get from those around you, the better positioned you will be to take action.

Take criticism graciously
While on the note of feedback, it is also not easy to be on the receiving end of criticism, even if it is constructive and helpful. Accepting that criticism courteously is a good way to set yourself apart from colleagues who are known to get defensive or ignore the feedback. Most of us are not perfect employees, but if you learn from your shortcomings and improve upon them tremendously, you’ll get close.

Work on your soft skills
Boosting your job-specific skills is important, but don’t forget about those general skills that apply to any given role, such as time management and organistion. The more you improve your soft skills, the more valuable an employee you will be, so think about the areas you are lacking in and try to do better.

Be a team player
Don’t underestimate the importance of being a strong team player. If you jump in when your colleagues need help or agree to collaborate on a project you would rather be running solo, you will show your manager that you’re agreeable and adaptable. These are qualities that could land you a step up the ladder.

Embrace risks
If you don’t take some risks, you’ll miss out on key opportunities to wow your boss and add real value to your company. Don’t stay quiet when a great idea comes to mind, and don’t hesitate to dive into a new project or initiative you feel will be a game-changer. Even if you don’t end up succeeding, there is a good chance your company will acknowledge your effort and courage.

Network

The people you know can be just as helpful, if not more so, than the things you know, when it comes to furthering your career. That is why it is always a good idea to expand your network. You can do so by attending conferences and industry events or asking your existing contacts for introductions. But don’t just network outside your company; get to know people from different departments and teams internally as well.

And…Don’t forget the mistakes of the past
Maybe you messed up a major project last year or tanked in a presentation you worked hard on. Rather than carry the burden of those mistakes with you into the new year, take some time to assess what went wrong and map out a plan to avoid a repeat during your next opportunity. Learning from previous mistakes without letting them hold you back not only shows tremendous growth, but courage as well.

Barry Whelan Excel Recruitment

7 Things To Think About Before You Leave Your Job

With unemployment at near perfect and companies crying out for great talent, more people than ever are on the move and wondering if the grass may be greener somewhere new. Barry Whelan, CEO of Excel Recruitment takes you through the things you need to think about before you make a move

In Excel Recruitment, we see a lot of people come to us desperate for a move or eager to make a change, go through the often long recruitment process, only to stay with their current employer. From salary to progression opportunities to just plain hating their boss there are many reasons people start looking for their next job. But before you request your p45, make sure you’re clear on the following points-

  1. Know your reasons

Assess why you want to make a move and figure out whether they can be fixed by less drastic measures than moving jobs. Want more responsibility or a salary increase? Ask for it. Feeling overworked or overwhelmed? Discuss the situation with your manager, assess your time management or drop something from your workload. What might seem like an overwhelming problem might actually have a simple fix that could save you time and effort doing up your CV and attending interviews.

  1. Know your goals

Similar to the first point, make a list of what you want, why you want it and why you can’t get it with your current employer. Then divide these into absolute necessities and points that are less important to you. By setting these out before you start looking for a job, you’re far less likely to waste your own time or make a rash decision and end up in another job that’s not right for you.

  1. Know your plan

Never leave a job without a job is advice our consultants dish out a lot, but for a good reason. Leaving a job suddenly or without a job to go to can look like an impulsive decision and gaps in your CV can be difficult to explain at interviews.

If you are planning on taking time off between roles or taking redundancy, make sure you’ve done the maths on how long you can afford to live without a regular salary and make sure you have a deadline for when you are going to start jo hunting again- the last thing you want is to wait too long and feel pressured to take the first job offer that comes along.

  1. Know your industry

Researching your industry, the current market and your competitor’s businesses will give you greater insight into what your next move should be and where you see yourself. It’s also a good habit to get into for when you eventually start attending interviews. You will be prepared and able to show that your research has been done. This has the added bonus of giving you a lot more confidence when selling yourself to the interviewer.

  1. Know your worth

In the same vein, knowing where your salary sits within the market is vitally important in order to ensure your applying for the right jobs and pitching yourself at the right level to prospective future employers. Research salary surveys for your industry or look at the salaries advertised on job ads looking for your level of experience to see what they’re offering. Again, do the maths to figure out whether you’re willing to take a drop in salary for your dream job or whether you’ll only consider a move for a boost to your pay packet.

  1. Know your benefits

Assess your current situation and ask yourself what you have to gain, and what you could potentially lose from your current benefits package. Does your current employer let you leave early on Wednesday for yoga class? Do you have extra holiday days built up over years of service that a new company may not match? Ask yourself the same questions about sick leave, pension, etc. and ensure you know what you want to gain, what you can’t live without and what you don’t mind losing for the right role.

  1. Know what works for you

Similarly to the above point about knowing your benefits and what you could stand to lose if you make a move. Factors like location, commute time or working environment are all important parts of overall job satisfaction but can often be forgotten about when you start chasing more money or a bigger company. Before you start sending your CV to companies, ask yourself how much of a pay increase you’d need to be happy giving up your 10-minute commute?

 

Barry Whelan Excel Recruitment

The Benefits of Benefits for Attracting Great Staff

With unemployment at near perfect and retailers large and small struggling to attract and retain good employees, CEO of Excel Recruitment Barry Whelan, discusses how important benefits are for attracting talent.

In 2017, the move from a client-driven job market to a candidate driven job market was completed across all retail sectors. A consistent drop in unemployment coupled with new entrants to the Irish market and a desire for the best talent from Irish retailers drove an unprecedented amount of opportunities across the retail industry. This, along with a return to growth in the wider economy and in particular, the hospitality sector has created a challenging talent environment from which to recruit, with other sectors including retail banking also looking for retailers.

Unemployment currently stands at 6.1% (3.7% Unemployment is ‘Perfect Employment’) so the competition for top talent is fierce and counter-offers are becoming more and more frequent, with employers working hard to keep talented staff

“1/3 of the workforce offered a role, turned it down due to lack of benefits”

While rising salaries are an effective way of both attracting and retaining staff, we’re seeing more and more the importance of benefits. 54% of employees seeking a new job want better pay & benefits while 30% of employees want benefits to increase their loyalty. Savvy employers are looking at the entire package in an effort to ensure retention and a happy, dedicated workforce. Bonuses, employees’ work-life balance and their level of autonomy are key drivers in ensuring staff feel valued and rewarded for their contribution to the business.

Employers are recognising that the decision to leave or stay with an employer is overwhelmingly an emotional decision and are seeking to improve loyalty through benefits. In terms of importance, the big three are most definitely pension, health and holidays. These are followed by flexi-time, flexible working hours, paid maternity/ paternity leave, sick pay scheme, weekend rotation and further education.

So what is coming down the tracks?

The top employee perks for 2017 Glassdoor USA-

IKEA- Paid Paternity for four months

Reebok- On-site gym with Cross fit classes.

Goldman Sachs- Health cover for gender reassignment surgery since 2008

Facebook- Free housing for Interns

Scripps Health- Free pet insurance

Starbucks- Full reimbursement for all workers taking an online BA Degree.

American Express- Parents are given access to a 24-hour lactation consultant, and mothers travelling for business can ship their breast milk home.

Eventbrite- The company offers workers a monthly $60 wellness allowance that can be used on anything from juice cleanses to a gym membership.

Wholefoods Market- 20% staff discount

Gap- Provides free access to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to corporate employees.

Swiss RE- Insurance company Swiss Re’s “Own the Way You Work” program encourages employees to embrace flexibility with their schedules and work remotely.

Southwest- Southwest offers all employees and their dependents access to Clear Skies, an employee assistance program that provides confidential counselling, work/life services, and legal consultations.

Genentech- Genentech offers unique on-site amenities, including car washes, haircuts, childcare centre, mobile spa and dentist.

Timberland- Timberland employees can take up to 40 hours of paid time off per year to volunteer.

Microsoft- $800 towards Gym membership

Deloitte- Two paid Sabbaticals

Amazon- Parental Share. Either Parent can take paid leave if one does not receive paid leave from their employer.

In-N-Out- Free Lunch

Barry Whelan, CEO Excel Recruitment

8 WAYS TO GET A GREAT JOB IN 2018!

New Year, New Career? If you’ve decided 2018 is the year you find your dream job, CEO of Excel Recruitment Barry Whelan shares his top tips on starting your search…

2017 was a great year for jobseekers and with unemployment currently standing at 6.1%, 2018 is shaping up to be even better with a strong job market, salaries on the increase and companies looking to employ. We are already out the door here in Excel Recruitment and if landing a great new job tops your wish list this year, there’s a good chance your wish will come true. Job hunting is always tough, but with a little effort you can really increase your chances of landing a great job,

Upgrade your LinkedIn Profile.

LinkedIn is simply your CV on social media. Potential employers are going to look you up on this platform. Build your profile professionally. Use Keywords that recruiters will search for and make sure your job title is not too bespoke or obscure and for the love of god, DON’T use a Selfie as your profile picture. Selfies are generally unflattering and unprofessional. All retailers know we buy with our eyes when it comes to product, well it’s the same with people. Get a professional headshot done.

Engage with a great recruiter.

Ask your friends and colleagues who they used, who they would recommend and get on that recruiter’s radar (Or save yourself some time and just click here to find the best recruiters in the biz.) Pop them a speculative CV and ask for a quick chat. Whilst they may not have your dream job now, they may in the future.

Upgrade your profile

Promote yourself as a knowledge leader in your industry. Join Trade associations, Volunteer to speak on Panels, Blog something of interest, and create a record of expertise for yourself.

Streamline your CV

Your CV a tool you use to get an interview. Make it a sledgehammer! Streamline your CV to really highlight your best achievements and the career success you have enjoyed, don’t overkill with lengthy cover notes or crazy detail. It is just the tool to raise interest in someone meeting you. The detail will come in the interview.

Erase your soft skills…and irrelevant experience

To streamline your CV just delete your soft skills and early career. If you are 10 years or more into your career, work in the corner shop or winning the all-Ireland ping pong championship when you were 12 is just taking up valuable space. Delete hobbies unless they are relevant to your job. Nobody cares!

Highlight your tech ability

We live in the world of technology, regardless of our job or industry. Make sure both on your CV and on LinkedIn you highlight every tech system, package and product you have ever had the pleasure of using. Microsoft this and that all the way to SAP, name check them all

Don’t follow the money

Nobody really likes greed, no matter how healthy the economy might be. Besides, a great job, short commute, route to progression and good Work/Life balance can go a long way to happiness in a job that money alone can’t offer. Don’t chase the Euro or at least, don’t come across as obsessed by money.

Know your Value

Research the market value of the position you are going for and pitch yourself accordingly, don’t frighten a new employer off by pitching yourself too high or indeed, undervalue yourself.

Good luck in your job hunt and be sure to check out our current live jobs to kick-start your search!

Barry Whelan Excel Recruitment

The Counter Offer Conundrum

Here at Excel Recruitment, we’re seeing counter offers becoming more and more common as companies have to try harder to attract and retain top talent. CEO Barry Whelan tells us why the counter-offer can often create more problems than it can solve….

I first wrote about counter offers for Shelflife magazine in 2012, but the current economic climate means it is well and truly a candidate’s market and counter-offers are becoming increasingly common. It takes a lot of time and money for a company to find and replace valuable staff and employers are becoming even more reluctant to let quality employees go. While most think of ‘counter-offers’ as matching or improving on an offered package, savvy employers will do their homework on the why behind an employee making a move and will try to ‘counter’ this reason for leaving.

As recruiters, we make it our mission to understand why a person wants a change. It takes time and effort for a person to do up their CV, research the market and come into meet us and in my experience it’s rarely just the number on their payslip that’s motivating them. Getting to the root of their reason for leaving is vital information when searching for a new job for them.

So, is accepting a counter-offer ever a good idea? My team and I have found that over the years, the answer is overwhelmingly No. Here are a few reasons why you should think twice before accepting a counter-offer from the employer you were determined to leave in the first place.

1.You had a good reason to leave, that probably hasn’t changed

Like I said earlier, it takes a lot of effort to start looking for jobs and you likely had a very good reason for wanting to leave. Unless it was solely pay, it’s highly unlikely this reason has changed. There’s a high probability that you’ll be looking for a new role again in no time at all, and this time you may not be in as good a position to find a new job.

 

2.They’ll question your loyalty

By telling your employer you’ve either been offered or accepted another position, you’re essentially saying you’ve been unhappy. So even if your company does counter, how can they trust that you won’t eventually stray again?

The bond of trust has been broken, you will leave the company at some stage, but perhaps now you have shown your cards it will be on their terms, not yours. When you are no longer perceived as part of the long-term future, you may find yourself passed up for promotion

3.You’ll burn bridges

Another company has invested their time, money and faith in you through the selection process and decided that you’re the right person for their role so losing you to a counter-offer isn’t something they will take lightly. By accepting a counter offer you will have burnt a bridge with the company looking to employ you. Some companies view this very dimly and if you find your circumstances changing they will not entertain your application again

4.You could hurt your future progression

There’s a chance your employer has given you a counter offer made up of a promotion or the pay rise that was coming your way anyway. By accepting their offer, you’re sending the message that your now satisfied with x amount and could be inadvertently moving any chance of progressing through the business even further down the line.

 

 

Aislinn Lea, Head of Fashion & Non-Food, Excel Recruitment

Excel’s Aislinn Lea- Retail is a career, not just a job

As the CAO and college places hit headlines again, head of Fashion & Non- Food Recruitment Aislinn Lea reflects on how retail can be overlooked as a career choice and why this is a mistake…

This past week has been a stressful time for many young people since learning their Leaving Cert results last Wednesday, followed by the anxious wait to see if they received a college place in Monday’s CAO offers. These 17/18/19-year-old will have many huge decisions to make in the next few days about the path they choose. Often in all the talk of opportunities in STEM subjects and the rise and fall of points, many people, regardless of age, overlook retail as an exciting and rewarding career path.

When I began my career in retail, I had no idea it would provide me with the opportunities and experiences that it has, eventually leading me to recruitment, working every day with fantastic clients and candidates, meeting new people and filling new and different roles every week. I couldn’t recommend retail more highly as an industry or a career path.

Progressive Careers

Retail Management is one of the most progressive careers in the market, an industry where the opportunities and careers available are ever-changing and as a result exciting, challenging and rewarding. The doors that are open to an enthusiastic candidate pursuing a career in retail are endless and include Management, Head Office, Buying, HR, Marketing, E-Tailing, Visual Management, the list goes on.

Not only that, but the vastness, variety and pace of the industry can provide anybody willing to work hard and learn with countless opportunities to meet new people, try new things, and see new places. Retail is an extremely fast-paced industry and is constantly innovating and evolving which provides anybody who wants to embrace new ideas and technologies, the opportunity to really make their mark and add real value to their employer, and their CV.

Those who see retail as a career and not just a job can open themselves up to a whole world of learning. There are many engaging, challenging and ever developing facets of the industry, both technically and commercially, so not only are there valuable life-skills to be gained there is also a huge depth of knowledge to be learned and countless career paths to potentially follow.

Inclusive Industry

Retail as an industry has become more savvy in terms of developing talent and employers are willing to invest more and more into their people through training, learning and development. There is a wealth of fantastic degrees, courses and Graduate Programmes available in retail, including any of the specialisms mentioned above.

Retail is a huge industry and is Ireland’s largest private-sector employer, employing over 282,000 workers across the country.An industry of this scale offers a wide range of opportunities and possibilities for all types of individuals and personalities from those with a natural gift for sales and customer engagement to others with a keen interest in data, tech, marketing or visuals

 

Dealing With Interview Nerves

Going for a job interview is always an anxiety provoking event. The best way to control your job interview nerves is to thoroughly prepare in advance. It is important to get advice and tools on how to ease the tension and make the job hunting process easier and the interview more enjoyable. Here are some tips and advice on how to calm those nerves and be composed and confident on the day.

The 5 minute surf

Understanding the organization’s business and the issues it faces will instantly impress the interviewer. A quick 5 minutes web search can throw up a wealth of insight and knowledge. Do the same across their social media channels, most companies at the very minimum are on Facebook and Twitter and allows you to quickly learn about the company and culture. Knowing about the latest company news, award nomination etc. that is readily available through Social Media will impress from the outset.

Put yourself on the spot

Focus on those elements of the interview which are in your control – i.e. you and what you already know. Spend 5 minutes writing down the most challenging questions you could be asked, then focus on answering one each day in the countdown to interview.

Adapting your language

Most organizations have a definite corporate language used to depict the company’s structure and processes. Spend 5 minutes studying the job spec to get a feel for how they describe your role and what you will be doing. If you can adapt your own language to that of the company and include some key phrases in your interview you are instantly going to make the interviewer feel comfortable and illustrate that you clearly understand what it is they are looking for.

Why should I work for you?

An interview is not a one-way affair; it is also your way of finding out more about the company and your employer so it’s important you ask questions too. Spend some time thinking about what drives you ethically, motivationally and idealistically. Developing questions which allow you to test your motivations will very quickly help you work out what sort of organization or department they are and whether they will suit you.

Twitter And Your Job Search

Twitter is often the preferred methods of job searching particularly for the younger demographic. It can serve as an important tool for you regarding networking and presents you with an expansive base of people and information. It is also somewhere you can fall down on if expected etiquette is not adhered too. Every major company and prospective employer is on Twitter and it is an essential resource for understanding their company culture and how they interact with their customer base. It offers exponential information but you should waver an air of caution as a potential jobseeker when conducting yourself on the social network.

Twitter is a platform that affords everyone the ability to construe an opinion and also allows complete strangers to engage with each other. Hiring Managers and Recruiters rarely care about your personal or political ideologies, what they do care about is how you fit as a candidate. However they do care immensely bout how you engage with others, particularly when something contentious is being discussed and the levels of diplomacy you maintain through the discourse.

If you are regularly partaking in heated debates via twitter they will have no choice but to take them into account. It is impossible to know what someone might take offense too, so the best option is to keep quiet while on your job-hunt. The same applies to your current job. Avoid saying anything professing your love and adoration for your current job. It may be a deterrent for a Hiring Manager in considering your candidacy for a new job. Likewise avoid saying anything rude or slanderous about how much you detest it.

While pretty self-explanatory, your social life should be kept to a minimal. By all means engage and be an active user, Hiring Managers favour someone who is competent on Social Media. What they don’t favour is someone advocating their drink fuelled stupor that happened last weekend. We all like to have fun but just be careful in what you post and avoid glorifying what could be seen as any unprofessional behaviour.

Twitter is no different to any other Social network. It offers a plethora of information and results and you can optimise this by using some useful hashtags and following relevant accounts. All of the main recruitment agencies use Twitter to advertise jobs under the #Jobfairy hashtag. You’ll find us at here at @ExcelRecruit for our Retail division and here at @ExcelJobsIRL for Hospitality, Temps and Medical.

Useful hashtags include #Jobfairy, #Nowhiring, #DublinJobs and #YouJob. Happy Tweeting!

What To Do On Your First Day In A New Job

Your first day in a new job will amalgamate excitement, nerves, stress and could perhaps be one of the most memorable days in your career. The job search can be particularly taxing having spent hours constantly retouching your CV and making sure it gets to the right people. Employers have hired you for a reason and have expectations that they expect your talent and skills to adhere to. Most of us feel high levels of excitement but also trepidation when we begin a new job. There are ways to elevate some of this stress however by adapting the same meticulous approach in your first day as you did in your job search. The first day sets the tone for the rest of your career with those you’ll be interacting with. While first days are usually consumed in formalities with very little specific responsibilities it is vital to adapt a proactive response to your new role rather than a passive one.

Chances are you will be inundated with the same question by new employees. ‘What is your background?’, ‘What did you do before this?’ ‘What exactly will you be doing here’. Often it can be a little overwhelming when people ask outright very specific questions. Considering these will be the people you converse and deal with every day it may often be a genuine interest as they have only been fed a vague understanding and simply want to strike up a conversation. Having a prepared piece will make this process a little less daunting.

The recommended buffer time to show up early is about 15 minutes. If you have not done the route before familiarise yourself with it on different occasions to gauge how long it takes including peak times. Showing up early is almost a given that employers expect nowadays. While no doubt determined to make a great impression remember to relax in order to optimise your productivity. Make sure you are well rested the night before and can maintain concentration. If you are adapting from an entirely different routine make sure you have condition yourself in the days preceding your first day. Set your alarm to your wake up time to condition yourself and see how you adjust. Eat a breakfast and set your outfit the night before. While these may seem very minimal they will all ease the stress involved and will help you towards a smooth first day.

Be as professional as you were in the interview process and however in doubt you may be take the conservative approach. Your first day is not a time to establish yourself as the joker of the office or to describe your weekend social life. You will establish the culture of the company or office environment quite quickly and it’s important not to disrupt this. The urge to impress can veer you off track, but it’s important to remember that you’ve already been hired so you don’t have to wow your colleagues straight away. Your first day is not the time to have a strong and strident opinion, but more about listening, observing and learning. In time you will impress naturally, and more so when you understand the ropes.