How To Make A Good First Impression At Work

If you are the new kid on the block or just had a new career move; you may be faced with the inevitable internal question: “how to make a good first impression at work.” If you have found yourself in this dilemma, look no further…



Here’s key tips on how to make a good first impression at work for guaranteed success.


Never Say “No” To Opportunities


To clarify, never say no to what “you” consider to be opportunities. A lot of the time people make career moves or take on work projects because they buy into other people’s ideas of what opportunities are. For e.g. just because the general consensus is that a manager position is an opportunity doesn’t mean it is an opportunity to you. Essentially never saying no to opportunities means taking on challenging endeavors that will benefit you and also put you in good standing with who you are trying to impress. If you are granted a new and exciting opportunity and you are not sure you are ready for it; indicate that it will be a learning curb but you will take it on either way. In cases like this add a little extra time to the project for learning and catching up.


Do Your Best When The Time Is Right


This may seem contrary to what life teaches us about always doing our best all the time – but is is literally what will save you from burnout later down the line. You should always do good work but save the juicy stuff when you have the biggest and most important audience paying attention. For e.g. a project you are working on that has the attention of senior managers and executives is when you should figuratively light the fireworks and impress away.


Under Promise And Over Deliver


Nothing makes you look better than over delivering. If you want to make a good first impression at work you need to perform better than expected. An easy way to do this is to under promise. If you know you have the skill to do a project in a day when it typically takes weeks; then give yourself a week long deadline but deliver early. However err on the side of caution, because if you over deliver too frequently the expectation of you rises and this can possibly lead to overwork and burnout later down the line.


Develop A Niche Specific Expertise


Want to know one of the easiest ways for how to make a good first impression at work? Okay! If you insist…. the key is actually being really great at some skill. This could be computers, presentations or data analysis. Be the person that everyone is wowed by for a particular skill; In this way you will automatically be creating great first impressions each time you assist someone. Be careful however that you don’t become the go to person for something that is not your primary job function. You don’t want to be fixing people’s cellphones when you are hired as an accountant; it just ain’t gonna gel well with your boss.


Give Valuable Insight


What generally creates good first impressions is great ideas better known as valuable insight. But to give great insight means first understanding the process and problems your company faces and then putting forward potential solutions. Another great way to get noticed is by having the final word…. Yes! try to have the final word during meetings, even if it means re-iterating everyone’s thoughts into something more tangible.


Respect People And Tacit knowledge


Don’t be that guy or gal! The “know it all” with the fancy degree and years of work experience not willing to listen to or respect others. This will get you ostracized faster than you can count to 10. Instead, develop a learning mindset. learn from the tacit knowledge of senior employees and respect key individuals in a company. This will not only allow you to better understand the company processes but to also allow you to integrate yourself within the company and not be seen as an outsider.


Learn The Culture and Values To Fit In


You should be choosing a company based on it’s values and culture. In this way, you don’t have to mold yourself into something you are not. Think of a company has a huge puzzle with pieces that fit perfectly into one another. All these pieces move in the same flow and direction. To impress the other pieces you also need to be moving constantly in the same direction of flow. Part of moving in the same direction means adhering to the company values and strategy while fitting into the culture means means playing nice with the other puzzle pieces.


Develop Your Personal Style Of Workmanship – Let You Work Speak For Itself


Be recognized for your way of thinking or working. For e.g. if you are a logical thinker, this could be what people consider your style of working. When you approach problems, you should then use this style of workmanship to tackle problems. Other styles of workmanship could be being hands on or customer focused. You will find that certain styles of workmanship fits better in certain roles for e.g. being customer focused fits well into product development and sales roles.


Pay Attention to personal grooming


Personal grooming is vital for first impressions, this could also include work etiquette like attending meetings on time, giving firm hand shakes and giving credit to others for their assistance. You should always dress the part of what you would like to be. For e.g. want to be a manager, dress the part – there are exceptions though. You should know just the right level to dress to; If no one wears suits at the office – don’t be the bright spark that does.


Let Your Past Experiences Speak For Itself


Your past will always follow you, like Freddy in Friday the 13th. Always leave a good trail for other to pick up on. This may be references, testimonials or past project outcomes. If this is good enough, it will do most of the talking with regards to making a good first impression and all you have to do is sustain this positive impression that has been created for you.


There is no hard and fast rule for how to create good first impressions at work. However, these critical tips are sure to set you on a good footing. Go forth and make yourself proud.

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