As a I mentioned in the previous post preparation is a way to deal with the nervousness that comes when starting something new. Below are some ways that I’m prepping for my first “grown-up” job.
- Organize your finances
- Come up with your financial goal. Ex: Mine is to pay off my student debt.
- Create an excel sheet with categories for each month so you see where your money is going and whether you’ve been adhering to your financial goals. Ex: Have categories such as rent, student loans, phone bills, utilities, groceries, gas, gym membership, insurance, car payments, eating out budget/coffee, shopping/ beauty budget, savings, investments, 401k and anything else you typically spend your money on.
- Map out your investments. It’s really beneficial to start investing right away. Most companies will match your contribution to your 401k to some degree, which is great for your retirement. Contributing to your 401k also decreases your taxes, compared to if you weren’t setting money aside for it. Your company’s policy should be identified in your benefits. Also, if you’re more of a passive investor and don’t want to invest in individual stocks, look into mutual funds and ETFs. Mutual funds and ETFs decrease some of your risk by diversifying your portfolio with various stocks.
- Do more research on your company and gain a clearer understanding of your role. I’ve been watching a ton of YouTube videos to see what other people in my incoming role have said about it.
- Read and reread your company’s benefits. This is so important!!! Things to look for are the company’s 401k policy, medical benefits, pay period, vacation policy and sick leave and discount on company stock. You should read this when you accept your offer but it’s always good to touch up on it if there’s been a gap between your acceptance date and start date.
- Plan your fitness routine. There are so many options out there so you have no excuse. I know this is going to be one of my priorities since I’ll be sitting at my desk for the majority of the day. If a gym membership or ClassPass is outside of your budget, look into YouTube fitness tutorials where all you pretty much need is a yoga mat and weights. I personally love YouTube Pilates tutorials and running on the treadmill.
- Research the optimal plan for your commute. Options include the bus, trains, carpooling or walking.
- Look into podcasts and update the music you want to listen to during the commute (cause I know my commute is going to be a long one!!!).
- Organize your professional wardrobe. My next post is going to be on places to shop for your business casual wardrobe, covering a range of budgets. Note however, each company has a different dress code so you’ll probably get a better understanding of this by your first week on the job. If you’re unsure about the dress code, I would either reach out to HR or dress business casual on the first day (better to be overdressed than under dressed). Make sure to keep those receipts for the those new clothes in case what you had in mind for your work wardrobe doesn’t exactly match with what the company had in mind.
- Brainstorm ideas for meal prepping (Pinterest to the rescue!!!). If meal prepping is not your thing, MealPal may be another option.
- Look into a side hustle. This is going to vary from individual to individual but look into what you’re passion about.
- Update your resume and LinkedIn. You’re probably not going to have time to do this after you start working so now is great time to get this off your checklist and refresh your memory on your job description. Of course you should eventually update your resume/ LinkedIn once you have specific projects you’ve worked on but that’s a while away. Also, by updating your LinkedIn with for example, “Incoming Business Analyst at Company X”, you’re able to connect with people at the company with similar titles and start networking even before you’re on the job! Never give up on an opportunity to network!!
- Look into volunteer opportunities. It’s a great way to give back to your community and meet new people outside of work.
I recently started adding to my Pinterest again as way to kind of create a brainstorming board with ideas from above, its a great way to organize what inspires you in one place!