Brits’ Top 30 New Job Anxieties Revealed

Forgetting names, overdressing, getting lost or delayed in traffic and excessive nerves are amongst the biggest nightmares faced by workers when starting with a new employer, a survey has revealed.

A poll of almost 3000 workers by branded products company 4imprint reveals the biggest fears faced when taking up a new role. With first impressions making a vital impact at work, it’s unsurprising that many of the items on the list can be put down to ‘first day nerves’.

More than half of the workers polled have already had a nightmare first day at work, and almost all stressed the importance of that first impression on new colleagues. Eight out of ten surveyed felt that they needed to get their clothing spot on and almost as many wished they had a uniform for work to remove the problem.

This is good news for 4imprint, which has just released a new range of corporate workwear. Their spokesperson said: “Starting a new job can be intimidating for a variety of reasons. From not knowing who you’ll be working with, not being 100% sure how to get to your new workplace and worries over what to wear can make for a nerve-wracking first day.

“Our study found the importance of what you wear to work can make you feel as comfortable as possible on a first day and help create a great first impression. A decision can be made about a person within 26 seconds of meeting them – which is why appearance is so important.

“Corporate work wear can provide reassurance to new starters and if your organisation operates in the service or retail sector then staff uniforms can also be vitally important for customers.”

Other fears on the list include finding that they have to be allocated a desk or computer, sending a sensitive email to all staff or making an inappropriate comment out of nervousness.

For those lucky people who excelled on their first day, the reason was put down to being fully prepared and sufficiently knowledgeable about the company. So it pays to do your research first. More than half aimed to arrive and a similar amount try to ask intelligent questions.


  1. Learned someone’s name then immediately forgotten it
  2. Got someone’s name wrong
  3. Was just too nervous
  4. Finding I had no computer / desk to work at
  5. Said something stupid due to nerves
  6. Arrived at the wrong work address
  7. Turned up completely overdressed compared to everyone else
  8. Worn shoes that ended up being agonisingly painful by the end of the day
  9. Had to have something simple explained numerous times
  10. Got there late due to traffic
  11. Being told I wasn’t the ‘first choice candidate’
  12. Forgotten the code to get in or out of the office
  13. Got there late due to public transport problems
  14. Put your foot in your mouth during a conversation with someone
  15. Turned up completely underdressed compared to everyone else
  16. Been over friendly
  17. Accidentally sent a sensitive email as a ‘staff all’
  18. Made someone’s tea wrong
  19. Said something inappropriate to a new colleague
  20. Got there late due to other reasons
  21. Damaged company property
  22. Spilled tea everywhere
  23. Took too long on a lunch break
  24. Got the company name wrong
  25. Went to the wrong address
  26. Asked how to turn your computer on
  27. Had a wardrobe malfunction like trousers splitting
  28. Took a personal call that was frowned upon
  29. Worn a tie when nobody else was wearing one
  30. Had to leave early due to a family emergency