6 ways to make a good first impression

Getting along with your coworkers is essential to accomplishing your career goals. Whether you’re doing an internship or starting a new job, fostering positive relationships with your office mates will expand your network and make you more savvy and productive. Here’s how to make a good impression at the office and get off on the right foot with your colleagues and supervisors. 

 

1. Smile

A smile takes minimal effort and instantly makes people feel more comfortable and at ease around you. It will also make you feel relaxed and in good spirits. Being more approachable is the first step to building office relationships.

 

2. Understand what’s expected of you

Although you’ll be jumping into a new position and working through the natural learning curve of your internship, it’s important to understand how you’re expected to perform. Know how your performance will be measured and use that to think about what you need to prioritize. If you’re confused about a certain task, don’t be afraid to ask for help.

 

 

how to make a good impression

 

3. Learn names

Knowing people’s names is an obvious and easy way to make a great first impression.  Start calling people by their names immediately and introduce yourself whenever you have the chance. It’s a basic building block of building relationships. The quicker you know who everyone is – the better. If there’s a company directory, take some time to look at it.

 

4. Be conscious of how you present yourself

Pretend your first week of your internship is like your living social media presence. You need to be polished and “on” as much as possible. Your hair should be done, you should be clean and wearing professional clothing. Avoid your nervous ticks like biting your nails, saying “um” or slouching. It just takes a few seconds for people to form an opinion of you, so looking and acting your best is key to success.

 

how to make a good impression

 

5. Make an effort to get to know people

Though your focus should always be your work, having strong relationships with your coworkers is advantageous both personally and professionally. Use your lunch hour to get to know your coworkers. Say “yes” to any invitations to eat or grab a drink or dinner after work.   When thinking about how to make a good impression, consider ways that you can be more outgoing. You can also take the initiative and plan things yourself as well. Everyone appreciates an invitation.

 

6. Listen and observe

Your first few months in the office are not the time to give your feedback on institutional changes. Instead, you should be paying close attention to the dynamics of the office, understanding what is frustrating your coworkers and what problems to anticipate. You also want to watch successful employees and understand what makes them successful and how you can learn from them.

 

Now that you know how to make a good impression at your internship, apply now to gain international experience.

 

 

Sources: https://www.fastcompany.com/3053740/6-steps-to-make-a-great-impression-at-your-new-job, https://www.thebalance.com/make-good-work-impression-526261, https://www.brazen.com/blog/archive/career-growth/10-tips-for-making-a-good-first-impression-read-this-before-starting-your-new-job/, http://fortune.com/2017/05/01/leadership-career-advice-first-impressions-work-day-malcolm-gladwell/

 

Photos:

1. based on IMG_4281, by Masa Israel Journey, CC-by-ND 2.0

2. based on Meeting, by UBC Learning Commons, CC-by-2.0

3. based on Nielsen Field Office, by Chase N., CC-by-SA 2.0

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Elizabeth Trovall

After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her fourth year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.

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