The helpful co-worker

The co-worker can be your best friend or your worst enemy.

Hopefully you will find that your co-workers are a friendly and welcoming group. It can make your starting work a whole lot easier if your co-workers take you under their wing and show you the ropes (to mix up a few metaphors).

As you are a new starter you will normally be expected to help out in areas that are probably not well defined in your job description. My advice is to not be so precious about only doing tasks within your job description in the first few weeks of your new job.

This is not to say that you should allow yourself to be taken advantage of, but be flexible and accommodating with your new co-workers if they are making an effort to help you and it’s not affecting your ability to do the tasks you were employed to do.

Remember the boss comes first, and you can only have one boss. Running errands for your co-workers is not a job requirement, unless your boss says so.

The unhelpful co-worker

It would obviously be nicer if everyone is friendly, but often you find relationships at work which are quite openly unfriendly at a social level, but work reasonably effectively at a professional level. This is more common than you might think.

So be prepared for entering the workforce and being in a company, group, team, where you have very little in common.

This should make no difference to your work situation, provided that you remember that you are there to do work, and that you are professional in your work.

As a new starter you may find that you are the only young person in the company. You may feel
isolated and alone. These feeling are normal for the first few weeks. Give yourself time to establish some contacts; don’t expect it all to happen at once. Remember that your co-workers may have been doing the same thing for months, or years and it will take time for them to adapt to you, “the new person on the block”.
now that your co-workers are being treated no better (and no worse) than you.