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Four First-Day Horror Stories, and How to Overcome the Fear of Embarrassment

Caitlyn Marchand
Happy Halloween! Today may mark the end of spooky season, but that doesn’t save you from the potential horrors that come with your first day at a new job. You may have already run through all of the worst-case scenarios, but here are some possible situations you may find yourself in as well as ways to overcome the embarrassment that follows.

Showing up late

I can’t think of a worse way to start your new job than to show up late on the first day. First impressions count, so if you find yourself stuck in unexpected traffic or end up missing the bus you were planning to catch, you should call your boss as soon as you know you will be late and let them know of the situation. It will definitely be awkward when you finally stroll in, but honesty is the best policy!

Not knowing where to sit for lunch

Worse than forgetting your lunch is the feeling you get as you stand at the edge of the break room, scanning the area for a non-intimidating place to sit. Hopefully your coworkers are kind enough to invite you to eat with them, but it can still be horrifying. On the bright side, this is a great way to spark a connection with your new coworkers, so don’t be too scared to make the first move!

Calling your boss the wrong name

Remember that time you called your 6th grade teacher “mom” and wanted to bury yourself in the ground? Don’t doubt that this can happen at work, too. Whether you flat out forget your bosses name or simply call them the wrong one, it’s mortifying. The easiest way to correct the situation is to acknowledge your mistake and (hopefully) laugh it off with them- it could either be a great way to break the ice, or a terrible start to your career, unfortunately.

Spilling coffee on your shirt

First impressions are undeniably important, so introducing yourself to your new coworkers with a giant brown stain across your white shirt probably isn't the best look. In the future, you can keep a Tide stick in your desk for smaller stains, and keep a spare shirt and pair of pants in your car for those harder-to-clean disasters.


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