As I pulled into the parking lot I felt a slight surge of nerves, it was my first day at a new job. Kerry, the CEO asked me to arrive around 8:30 AM, and it was 8:20. I stalled for a few minutes, checked my reflection in the car mirror, took a deep breath and headed into the office.
The building was new and so far undecorated, there were some boxes stacked in the hallway. As I opened the door I expected the receptionist to greet me, but she was steadily typing and didn't look up as I approached the desk. With her eyes still focused on her task in a tired voice she asked if she could help me.
I told her my name, and that I was a new employee, and that Kerry told me to ask for him. I glanced around seeking someone I recognized, noticed the receptionist's name plate said Sue in cheerful letters, a contrast to the face that was now staring at me as if she didn't like what she saw. She didn't just look puzzled she looked annoyed. There was a windowed office in my line of sight where I noticed a pretty, dark haired lady watching the exchange with interest. She caught my eye and nodded, but didn't look away. Sue was still staring at me as she tersely stated that Kerry wasn't in yet and that she had no idea they were expecting a new employee. A mini standoff ensued as neither of us knew exactly what to do. After staring at me for what felt like a long time, Sue sighed and picked up the phone, I heard it ring in another windowed office just a few feet away from where I was standing.
"This is Greg", his voice answered.
It struck me as a little of funny, because she obviously knew who she was calling and the entire exchange didn't require a phone at all, Sue could have just raised her voice and said, "Hey Greg". lol
I continued to look around as Sue informed Greg that there was a stranger in the building who thought she would be starting a job, in a hushed tone she informed Greg that she didn't even know we were hiring. It nearly made me laugh out loud, when she broke into a husky whisper to mention this, while sitting less than a foot away from me. I fought off the urge to say, "I can hear you.". I stood awkwardly while they discussed how neither of them knew they were expecting a new employee.
I heard the phone exchange end and I heard Greg dial his phone and leave a message for Kerry to call him, he hung up a bit harder than necessary. Sue nodded at a couple of chairs by the entry door and went back to typing on her computer. I took two steps towards the chair before sitting down and I felt the urge to head back out the door. Just as I was making the decision to sit, Greg emerged from his office with a winning smile, and a friendly handshake. He had a friendly smile that reached his eyes, and he made a joke about Kerry being bad at communication while he invited me to join him in his office. I don't remember the exact details of that conversation, but it was ironic and funny that Greg was trying to decide what it was that I had been hired to do. Also, a bit unnerving.
I learned that Kerry had been called suddenly out of town and had forgotten to communicate to anyone that I was starting today. There was an inside joke in the tone Greg used to inform me of this, but I knew I didn't get the joke.
Suddenly a short blonde haired man banged open the office door and stood in the doorway, looking angry, his arms hung straight at his sides with this hands bound tightly into fists. Sue and the pretty dark haired lady, both watched. Greg looked at me with a silent apology, that I understood even though I just met him. He introduced me to Ken, Co-Owner, CFO and Kerry's brother. Ken didn't bother to hide his annoyance and only offered me a brief nod as him and Greg discussed where I should sit and what I might be doing.
After their exchange Greg apologized for their unorganized greeting and lead me to an employee's lunch room, and offered me some coffee while they decided where to create a work space and find a computer for me.
After a long hour or so passed, Greg returned to lead me to a desk that had been moved into the office with the pretty dark haired lady, and I learned her name was Wendy. She greeted me with a friendly smile and seemed pleased rather than upset to have a new office mate. Nobody was clear on what I should do so they handed me employee paperwork, a employees manual and told me to personalize my computer.
Ken stormed in and out of the room bringing office supplies, hooking up the phone, informing me of my passwords, and I noticed when he stomped around the office everyone moved out of the way.
I felt suddenly grateful for Wendy's friendliness and worried about my new job.
I began to read the paperwork in front of me.
I've been considering trying to write about our little company that went from Start Up to Public and what a crazy journey that was.
This was my first attempt, I mostly write commentary so a bit of a new thing...
Tell me about your most awkward "First Day" in the comment section.
Tell me about your most awkward "First Day" in the comment section.!