5 Ways to Create a Great First Impression — From a Hiring Manager

Cartoon of person reviewing charts and diagrams.

An intimidating part of gig-work can be making lasting impressions or relationships in such a short amount of time. When a hiring manager realizes they can rely on you to do a great job, then you’ll likely begin to receive recurring jobs or longer-term commitments, so here are some tips on how to make sure your first impression is the best impression.

Do your homework

Show your interest and commitment by putting in time to understand the position, as well as how it reflects on the hiring company. If you are highlighting a product, familiarize yourself with it online and ask questions to ensure your understanding. If you are assisting at an event, find out answers to common questions (like bathroom locations) so you can provide a high level of customer service.

Dress the part

Ask for and abide by the dress code. For food service and retail, see if you can visit the store beforehand so you can show up for your shift dressed like your teammates. If you are told you’ll receive a shirt or jacket at the event, double check if your black shoes and black pants are in great shape. Your personality will do a lot of the work, but make sure you’re visually adhering to what the company is looking for.

Get there early

Clarify what time you need to arrive for your shift and plan to arrive 15-20 minutes early. If your shift starts at noon, you can’t walk into the building at noon — you won’t be ready to work! Planning to show up early gives you time for handling unlucky issues (forgetting something at home, a late train, getting lost in the building). Being ready to work a little early also gives you time to compose yourself and get ready to work, which is something your team leaders and managers truly appreciate.

Remember important names

Review all relevant information provided before showing up for your shift, but make it a priority to remember your supervisor’s name. If the person that hired you isn’t the one at the site, ask who you can connect with on the day of the event to inform the organizers you have arrived and are ready to do your job.
The supervisor might have several workers checking in with them that day, but if you are knowledgeable, dressed to impress, punctual and you greet them and introduce yourself, you have a better chance of standing out.

Close the deal

Thank your supervisor or manager when your shift ends, after you check out. Use their name and don’t be afraid to remind them who you are if they can’t remember yours. Expressing your gratitude for their guidance and this opportunity shows that you value their time and helps give them a positive experience to associate with you. 

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