If you’ve clicked on this page, it probably means you’ve just landed your graduate role – congrats! Now you’re over the first – arguably the worst – hurdle, so what’s next?

Settling into a new job, especially your first job can be a daunting task. In those first few weeks, everything can seem so alien and you have a million questions, but then suddenly six months down the line it’s a distant memory. It often takes speaking to new grads to realise just how far you’ve come!

Say yes to as much as you can

In your first few months, immerse yourself in the company culture to get to know your colleagues. This shows you want to make the effort to be an active part of the company – even more so if you’re starting remotely! If it’s anything like Ruder Finn, this might mean joining mindfulness sessions, yoga classes, cook clubs, and other virtual socials. What better way to get to know your colleagues than over a questionable attempt at a new dinner recipe? (Follow us on Instagram to keep up with our latest happenings!)

Make the most of this time

The initial few weeks of your job often mean a lot of onboarding and general easing you into work life. This is your perfect opportunity to grab the free time while you’ve got it, research everything there is to know about your projects and note down anything you think could be useful for the future. When you come to writing campaign materials down the line, you’ll then have a solid knowledge of your clients to refer back to which will make the process far easier and more efficient.

Build relationships

Networking – we’ve all heard of it before, but you may not realise just how powerful it can be. Whether via Zoom or in person, building a rapport with your colleagues is an important way to gain their trust and set the foundations for working together on future projects. It might feel a bit like you’re the ‘new kid at the playground’ but putting yourself out there will go a long way and solidify your position in the team and wider agency.

Remain optimistic…

…Easily said, I know, but trust me! Of course, there will be days you might feel lost or completely out of your comfort zone while you’re adapting to a new place. Reach out to the colleagues you’ve built a relationship with and get their advice. Everyone understands what you’re going through and can support you when you need it.

Look to your future

Once you’ve done all that and feel a bit less like a deer in headlights, turn towards your future with the company. What are your strengths and areas for development? What do you enjoy? How can you progress? Rather than waiting for your manager or other team members to ask, proactively seek to do more of what you love and even find a training course to help you move along the way. Writing is the main area I enjoy, so when I joined, I asked to be involved in developing the company newsletter and social media content. Whatever you like doing, there will likely be a project you can get involved with that relates to that!

Looking to your future is a great way to show your motivation to improve and grow with the company. Plus, it gives you some goals to focus on each day.

And finally, enjoy it! You’ve worked hard to secure your job so make the most of it. Forgive yourself for the little mistakes, we all make them, and get excited for the whirlwind you’re about to experience.

Beth joined Ruder Finn in October 2020 on our graduate programme and has since been promoted to Account Executive.