So you’ve landed yourself an Apprenticeship – amazing news! But now you’re about to start, how do you ensure that you make the most of this opportunity? We’ve compiled a list of some dos and don’ts to help you nail the transition from newbie to top Apprentice.
Practice your journey
Being on time, especially on your first day, is important for making a good first impression. It’s also a good idea to do a practice journey from your house to work at the time you would normally be travelling. This gives you an idea of how busy the traffic will be and how long your commute will take. Also, at the end of the day don’t be the first to leave – waiting until your team finishes to leave, or five minutes after you are meant to finish shows your employer that you enjoyed your first day and are keen to get stuck in.
Get to know your colleagues
Try to get to know as many people in your department and the rest of the company as possible. The longer you work at the company, the more people you are likely to meet, but don’t be afraid to talk to people in the workplace when you’re still new. Learning people’s names and what their role is will go a long way and help you start to develop positive relationships at work.
Show a positive attitude
Show your employer that you are enthusiastic about your new Apprenticeship role and be positive about tackling any tasks and challenges that are set for you. A positive, can-do attitude won’t go unnoticed or unappreciated by your colleagues and employer. It can help people see you in a positive light and could lead to more opportunities within your workplace.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Asking lots of questions can feel a little scary, yet questioning and staying curious helps you learn and shows to your new employers that you are engaged and interested in your role. It’s important to realise that nobody will expect you to know everything straight away, so don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions from your mentor (if you have been assigned one) or other colleagues when you need it. Even if you think it’s a silly question, your colleagues will respect you more for speaking up than making mistakes because you were too afraid to ask. And if you do make a mistake, ensure you tell somebody who can help you solve it. An Apprenticeship is a learning curve so don’t be embarrassed.
Join in the tea round
Something as simple as offering to make your colleagues a cuppa will go a long way towards helping you integrate into the team. This shows willingness to pitch in and contribute to the team and will be much appreciated by your colleagues. It can be daunting to remember everyone’s preferences but you’ll have it down to a T before you know it!
Ask for help when you need it
We’ve already discussed not being afraid to ask questions, but not being afraid to ask for help is key too, so this is our final tip for new Apprenticeships. You are there to learn from your employer; you aren’t supposed to know how everything works straight away. If you are unsure how to tackle a certain task, ask your colleagues to show you what to do. If you find that you are struggling with any aspect of your new role, the worst thing you can do is stay quiet and suffer in silence. Talk to your manager who will do their best to help solve the issue, however small you think it may be.
Prepare for your monthly visits from your assessor
Part of your Apprenticeship programme involves monthly visits from your assessor who will set you tasks to complete before their next visit. Be prepared for your next meeting by striving to complete your set work in plenty of time. This will highlight your planning and time management skills to both your assessor and employer, and being organised will help you develop and progress through your Apprenticeship.
It’s never too early to think of your next steps
Although you’ve only just started your Apprenticeship, it’s never too early to think about your next steps. Is there an opportunity for progressing onto a higher level Apprenticeship, gain a promotion or a permanent job with your employer once you’ve completed your Apprenticeship? Being committed to your role, showing enthusiasm and a willingness to learn will all stand you in good stead if you want to progress with your current employer.
If you’re reading this and you haven’t bagged yourself an Apprenticeship yet, check out our Apprenticeship vacancies. We have hundreds of vacancies across South and Mid Wales with employers looking for bright young candidates like you. We also have connections with over 700 employers and continue to help over 6,500 young Welsh people achieve their career ambitions.