The 11 worst things to say on your first day

The 11 worst things to say on your first day

We wouldn’t blame you for being nervous before you start a new job. You’re not sure where the land lies yet, you don’t know which mug is off limits in the kitchen and you’ve got no one to sit with at lunch. There is good news though, there are plenty of things that you can do to get off on the right foot. You can find out how to make your first day a success in our video, but sometimes what you don’t say is just as important!

Business insider has revealed the 11 worst things to say on your first day in a new job – make sure you steer well clear of these...

  1. 'When do I get a raise?'

    This is one of the worst things you can say when you first join a company. It’ll leave the impression that you’re only concerned with how much money you take home, and not adding value to your team. You’re best off leaving this question until your first appraisal, when you can demonstrate the additional value that you’ve brought to the company above and beyond your job description.

  2. 'BTW, I have to leave early on Fridays.'

    Any special circumstances that you’ve got should be discussed before you begin your role, and just wanting to start your weekend early won’t cut it. Your first three months in your new job should be all about proving your worth, and demonstrating your productivity – not skiving off.

  3. 'Hang on ... I'm just finishing up this HR paperwork.'

    Make sure that all your paperwork is finished before your first day. HR might give you some additional documents to sign, but these should be done in your lunch break. If you get asked to attend a meeting or take on a project you need to jump in immediately – you want to give the impression that you’re eager and keen to jump straight in.

  4. 'Who should I meet and who should I avoid around here?'

    Never ask anything this petty on your first day. You’ll give the impression that you’re prone to gossip and not to be trusted. Not what you want your new colleagues to think of you!

  5. 'That's not how I learned how to do it.'

    You want to be open to learning new methods and process to do things, even if they’re not how you’re used to operating. You need to be adaptable to fit into your new environment and show that you can learn new procedures. If you have a more efficient way to do something that would save time or money, this could be a good thing to bring up with your boss after the first few weeks. It’ll show that you can adapt to their processes as well as suggest improvements.

  6. 'I heard [x rumor]. Is it true?'

    This is the same as asking about who to avoid – it’ll leave the impression that you’re petty and not to be trusted. If you’ve heard things from other people that work in the company, you’ll leave your colleagues thinking that you can’t be relied on to keep confidentiality as well.

  7. 'I'm going through a bit of a rough time.'

    Leave any personal issues that you might be facing at the door on your way in. Your new job is not the place to air your grievances about your ex, or about how mad you are at your friend right now. You want to project the image that you’re reliable and competent, not an oversharer or excessively emotional.

  8. 'What do you have to do around here to get an upgrade on this company phone?'

    Even if the technology isn’t exactly cutting edge, don’t complain about it! The company will have an agreement with their providers in place, and you can be sure that they’re not going to make an exception just for you.

  9. 'My old boss was clueless.'

    Badmouthing your last place of work or your last boss doesn’t just leave a bad impression of them. Your colleagues will wonder why you left – if it was because of you or them! You’ll also seem less trustworthy and they’ll wonder what you’ll eventually say about them behind their backs.

  10. 'I'd like to invite you all to my church this Sunday.'

    This should be an obvious one, but keep all your religious or political views to yourself. You need to work with your colleagues every day, so don’t start your job by getting their backs up!

  11. 'Hey, working hard or hardly working?!'

    If you notice any colleagues kicking back or taking it easy, keep these observations to yourself. Chances are your boss already knows, and pointing it out will cast doubt over your loyalty to your team.

If you’re worried about making the right impression on your first day at work, check out our new job checklist to calm your nerves!