What Not to Do – Edition 1

First Day at a New Job

There’s a lot of information available today about what we SHOULD do when searching for or starting a new job. Whether you’re looking for phone interview tips or you’re trying to spruce up your resume, we have answers for you. But most of that information, including ours, primarily focuses on what you SHOULD do. Far fewer keystrokes across the web are devoted to explaining what you SHOULD AVOID doing in any particular situation. We want to help fill the information gap with this first installment of a new semi-regular series – What Not to Do!

Without further ado, here are three things NOT to do during your first day on a new job.

1. Don’t Self-Destruct

This may sound simple, but it’s still a common problem. The biggest hurdles most people encounter their first day at a new job are self-inflicted. Do not self-destruct.

What can help:

  • Go to bed early the night before
  • Eat breakfast
  • Arrive on time or early

2. Don’t Be A Know-It-All 

You’re there and you’re new, act like it. Whether you know a lot about your industry or position, you don’t know much about your new employer or how they do things yet. There may come a time to be a change agent,but, we promise, it won’t be on your first day.

What can help:

  • Ask questions
  • Attend orientation
  • Accept meeting invitations with coworkers
  • Take good notes

3. Don’t Use Your Phone

In the pre-cell phone era, nobody brought a newspaper with them to their cubicle or onto the production floor. But technology has changed everything about our work lives, including the availability and convenience of distractions. Cell phone usage is the single most common employer complaint of employees while on the clock. If you’re someone that can have your phone in your pocket and keep it there, pat yourself on the back for being a good example to your colleagues. But, if you are one of the folks who struggle with this, there’s a simple way to avoid your phones too. Leave them in your car or locker! Out of sight is out of mind and, in this case, it’s just good business too.


If you found value in this list, you might find value in these tips for those with new hires, or who are newly hired. And remember, if you have ideas for things not to do (or places and situations in which you shouldn’t do them) we’re happy to share those too! Just send them to our PMG Writing Team and we’ll cover them in a future blog too.

Josh Erickson, ReTool Public Relations & Engagement Specialist