Dos & Donts In a New Job!

Do's & Dont's

I’m sure some of you know I’ve been changing jobs a fair bit in the last 6 months…well OK twice.  The first job was just not for me, the second job is more my stride thankfully!  I’ve recently been thinking about new job etiquette, I’ve been watching all the various new staff join and thinking about my own behaviour.  I have some do’s & don’ts, if you have any you’d like to add, I’d love to hear them!


Be on time.  I think it’s a bit sad to have to mention this, but I was surprised to see folks coming in late, either on their first day or within their first few weeks.  Unless it’s something you’ve already arranged, don’t be late.  It just gives the wrong impression and if people are depending on you, it just delays their work.  You’ll become known as unreliable if it happens on a regular basis, no matter how much you explain, you’ll still be known as unreliable.

Be Presentable.  This seems pretty obvious, but I’m always surprised by this one.  Shower everyday, wash your teeth everyday – even if you’re running late, wash your face & teeth, seriously.  Iron your clothes if they need it.  I’m fortunate that there is no dress code for my work place, but I still make sure I’m clean, tidy and don’t wiff!

Be Positive! OK so we’re not all naturally positive people, you don’t have to have rainbows sprouting out of your head to ask someone how their day is going!  Smile, thank people for anything they help you with, have a chuckle with colleagues.  The more positive you become, the more it spreads!  It will brighten everyone’s day – yes there will always be an office grump but you can be polite and positive for them.  Generally people are tired of the office grump and prefer not to deal with them if possible..  It is nice to be nice, trust me.

Use Your Initiative. Ask where the documentation is stored so if you have any questions in future, you’ll be able to find the answers you need.  If you’re quiet on the work front, do some reading!  If you see pain points in the work processes, make a note and have a think of how it could be improved, then suggest it – obviously make sure you don’t just say, “this is rubbish, we should do this instead”.  Someone has put effort in, don’t insult them.  There is always something you could be doing!  Ask if you really cannot find anything.  Or better yet, find something to do, then mention to your line manager that you’re doing this, but you wanted to check if there was anything of higher priority.

Be Willing To Learn.  Whether this is from your peers, your manager or a trainer.  Open your brain, learn all you can about your job.  Own what you do.  It’ll make your life easier and you can build a bond with the person you’re learning from.  Now don’t become a submissive person that just gets told what to do,  there can’t be confusion sometimes initially, just be clear that you’ve it figured out now and you think you’ve got it but you will ask if you get stuck, then smile and thank them.  No one likes a know it all either.  Also on this front – ask questions!  Don’t be afraid to ask if you don’t understand something.  Yes it can be embarrassing, but it’s better to know than guess, if you can’t find the answer in your documentation, ask!

Socialise.  Now I’m not recommending going out and getting drunk, actually, probably best if you don’t get drunk with new colleagues.  I do think that going for lunch, or having a drink with a few new work colleagues in the first few weeks is a good idea.  However, this also applies to socialising at work – say Hello to people while you make your cuppa, or while you have your lunch.  Get to know the people you work with, you want a bond other than work, it just makes life easier!


Gossiping.  Don’t get sucked into the office gossip.  You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life, it just makes your working life more miserable and you’ll no longer be trusted by anyone that isn’t the office gossip.  Listen if you must, but try to just change the conversation or walk away.  It’s rare that the office gossip becomes anything more than they are.

Whinge. This is very similar to the Gossiping.  It is exhausting listening to a whinge.  Now do not get this confused with having a bad day and having the odd moan.  Being a whinge, is someone that does nothing but complain, whether it’s about the weather, their chair being uncomfortable, the aircon being too cold, that their computer is too slow, slagging off people from outside work.  You get the idea!  If something is annoying you, fix it.  Use your brain, you can figure out how to improve the situation.  Again whinging just means you’re an unreliable person that clearly doesn’t want to improve their circumstance.  Who wants to work with that?  It’s exhausting to listen to.  I think this applies to life as well.  Unless you’re going to change something, stop whinging about it.

Be An Arrogant Ass.  Can you tell there is a theme?  All those rubbish characteristics, don’t do them.  No one thinks you’re that great.  They smile at you and nod, then store that information away that you’re just an arrogant ass.  Having confidence in your work is not the same as being arrogant, shoving it down people’s throats if being arrogant.

I’ve elaborated more in the video below and given examples etc, so if you want more info you can check out the video below.  I’d love to know your tips for work place behaviour!  Thanks for reading x

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