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Keeping it simple: on the first day of a new job

They say it takes three seconds to form an opinion of someone. So, naturally, it’s important to make a great first impression.

This is perhaps most important on someone’s first day in a new job — something my nephew realised when he began working at a bank in Hong Kong this week. But my advice to him appears to have fallen on deaf ears.

For reasons unknown to me, the lad decided that day one was the perfect time to complete a blood test he needed as part of a routine physical. He thought no one would be the wiser if he just popped off down the street to have his blood taken during his lunch break.

But the looming blood test meant the chap started his first day on an empty stomach.

This meant that after the nurse drew his blood, my nephew became lightheaded, stood up, fainted and slammed his head on the side of a table, leaving a big gash on his forehead. Fortunately for him, he was surrounded by medical professionals. Unfortunately, his routine lunch hour left him looking like he had been in a fight.

As luck would have it, my nephew was scheduled to have an introductory meeting with his department head that same afternoon. Needless to say, eyes widened as he walked in with a freshly stitched gash on the side of his head.

Honesty is not always the best policy at work, but he went with it anyway and managed to get through the explanation with just a red face and a few laughs — but probably with questions raging in his boss’s head about whether he had made a mistake with the new hire.

After his debacle, I invited my nephew for a drink and consoled him — it could have been worse, I said, he could have been late on his first day. Turns out, after drinks at the Captain’s Bar that evening, he ended up late and hungover on his second.

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