How to survive your probation period

The secret to surviving your probation period

If you are one of the many students who have filled out painstaking applications for Graduate job roles, attended numerous interviews and training days to finally be offered the job, then you may feel like the hard part is over. I’m here to give you some bad news – it’s not! The majority of you will have a probation period to get through so you need to continue to impress your employer after you start! Don’t worry; they believed in you enough to offer you the job so don’t think that they are just looking for a reason to sack you! Want to know The secret to surviving your probation period? Read these simple steps now:

Look the part

OK, so unless you applied for ‘Britain’s Next Top Model’ then you probably weren’t hired for your appearance. You DO need to make an effort however, so invest in a wardrobe appropriate to your job role. Not sure what to wear? Take a look at what the other employees are wearing and try and ‘blend-in’ as best you can. I’m not saying go in wearing something identical to the person at the next desk, but you want to fit into the team and avoid any embarrassing situations of being under / over dressed.

Learn from your colleagues

Now when you start your job you will probably be given structured training / learning tools in order to grasp the tasks and systems you will be using on a daily basis. Try and go beyond this and talk to the other employees in the company to find out more information about company culture and habits so you can adopt this yourself. You want to become part of the team, if you operate differently to the other employees then you may stick out for negative reasons.

Treat it like revision

Remember how hard you worked to revise for your final exams? You need to adopt this approach in your first few months at your job! Immerse yourself in your notes and continue to read over any training documents you were given. Make sure you get plenty of early nights in the week and try and rein it in at the weekend if you can! Your body and brain will thank you for it!

Don’t forget to smile

Even if your personality is ‘grumpy in the mornings’ or ‘sarcastic and annoying’ you cannot let that come across to your new employer! Keep a positive approach and don’t forget to smile, keep good manners and be friendly to everyone in work – that goes for colleagues, bosses and customers! You want to become a member of the team who people enjoy being around, not someone that gets on everyone’s nerves!

Stay on the fence

Whatever you do, DO NOT GET INVOLVED IN OFFICE POLITICS! Even if you have an opinion on what is being discussed it is better to stay out of it. You want to stand out at work for your efforts and accomplishments, not your negative opinions on office policies etc.!

Be punctual

It’s pretty obvious, keep being late then you won’t pass your probation! Of course there will be situations you can’t avoid that can make you late, if this happens make sure you phone your manager in as much time as possible to let them know. Don’t just send a text as it gives the impression that you’re not bothered. If you are late, make sure you offer to make up the time in your lunch / after work to show you are committed.

Use your strengths

As I said earlier, you have managed to sell yourself well to the employer and prove your skills in order to get the job. You need to continue to do so and keep using your skills to achieve results in your day-to-day tasks! A little extra effort in the probation period will pay off in the long-run! Not sure about something? Ask questions and learn from the answers! Your employee would rather you shout up early on than watch you pretend to know what your doing.


Sophie Heaton (Digital Campaign Manager)



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