• First Day Strategy | Emerging Leaders (Part 1)

    Thousands of young people are about to enter into their first day of work — just like you.  You need a ‘first day strategy’ if you’re going to stand out from the crowd. Here’s a first day strategy that works!

    Congrats on the new job, by the way! As a successful millennial myself, I’ve had the opportunity to experience ten different first days starting a new job. TEN FIRST DAYS.  From that valuable experience, I was able to create, implement, and reap the success of a fool-proof first day strategy and I want to share it with you.  

    I can close my eyes and instantly be back in your shoes. Walking through those new doors…heart pounding, palms sweating, “Do I have everything I need”, “Are they going to like me”, and so on.

    Deep breath — you can do this! Everyone’s leadership journey has a ‘day one’ — so let’s get down to the strategy that will start your professional career off on the right foot.

    What does leadership look like, especially the first day of work?  On your first day, you will meet one of the most important people at this point in your career — your trainer. Because I have been on the other side, I have no doubt that after you leave on your first day, your trainer will be asked by their boss what they think about you. It is your responsibility to make a lasting, positive, impression. Do you have a strategy to accomplish that — a strategy to help you stand out on your first day?

    3 Tips to Set Yourself Apart with Your Trainer  

     1. Get To Know Your Trainer.

    “They” say millennials have a hard time with face-to-face communication in this digital age. Set yourself apart by making eye contact, asking questions, and listening to your trainer.

    Ask about their professional experience. This will accomplish two things. First, you will better understand their point of view as you work with them through the coming years. Second, you can get a feel for what their career aspirations are and how you might fit into the long-term plan at the organization.

    Ask about their family and what they like to do for fun.  Of course their professional experience is valuable, but you need to get to know them on a personal level too. Start purposefully building relationships from day one. You will spend more time with the people you work with than anyone else (sad, but true). People can open doors for you and people can close doors to you.  People can invest in you or people can write you off.  As an emerging leader, your team will be the very best asset you have, so make sure you know and understand them well.

    2.  Take Notes

    Taking notes not only shows your trainer you care, but also it is proven that if you hear and see information, you are more likely to remember it.  

    Side note: If your trainer is not tech-savvy and you choose to take notes on your phone — tell them what you are doing. Repeatedly, I have heard trainers say they thought their trainee was playing on their phone all day only to find out they were using it to take notes!  With such a diverse workforce, it’s important to communicate even on small things like this!

    3.  Acknowledge Their Value.

    Tell your trainer you are excited to learn from them! People like compliments. Genuinely give them out like confetti. By doing this, you will energize your trainer and let them know you are committed to self-development. Your trainer will be more willing to invest in you.

     Your trainer has likely achieved some measure of success within the company.  Because of this, they are now tasked with taking you under their wing. Behind every good leader are those people who shared, showed and supported them on their journey. Your trainer probably has friends and mentors that are smarter and more experienced than you. It’s also likely that, if recommended by your trainer, they would be willing to invest in you. If you want to eventually access your trainer’s network, you need to start by completing tips one and two on your first day.

    Are you serious about setting the stage for your ultimate influence and success?  Stay tuned for part two “Ask for Opportunity | Emerging Leaders” to learn how to find opportunity and then make it yours!

    #emergingleaders #firstday #leadershipdevelopment #professionaldevelopment #GenX #college #softskills #communicationiskey #careerready

    Alyson Van Hooser
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