It’s summertime, which means that if you’re in high school or college or have recently graduated, you’re probably looking to intern somewhere. It’s always great to have some tips and tricks to fall back on before starting an internship, especially if it’s your first one. Most of us know the usual: dress smart and appropriate, act professional and be on time. But if you’re going to be spending your summer trying to stack up experience without getting paid, you might want to know of some ways to make it productive and successful. Take our advice and who knows, you might even end up getting a full-time job out of your internship!
1. First off, always do your homework!
When you get an internship, you’re expected to have some knowledge of the organization you’ll be working for. Doing some research before you walk in on your first day is a great way to impress your boss and create opportunities for yourself. You’ll have an idea of the kind of work the people around you do and will be able to better adjust and cater your ideas according to the same. Even if you start off doing menial tasks around the office, if an opportunity to present your ideas ever arises, you’ll always be prepared.
2. Ask for tasks.
The quality of your internship can be determined by two things: how the company or organization treats the opportunity of having a set of “free” hands and how much you push to make the most out of it. While in some cases even trying your best may yield no result, you’ll still have something to put on your résumé. But if you’re lucky enough to be interning at a place where you do get opportunities to do work that you’re interested in, always push for more. If your employers see that you genuinely do want to work harder and take on larger responsibilities, chances are, they’ll let you.
3. Take responsibility and prove that you're committed.
When you take on a task, make sure you follow it through all the way. In case you don’t understand what exactly it is you’re supposed to be doing, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Asking questions shows your boss that you’re intent on doing well. Once again, do your research. If the project you’re working on is similar to something the organization has done in the past, look it up or ask for a sample to see the format and get a better idea of what you would like to do. Don’t be shy to throw in your ideas and check with your boss to see if they like them. It shows them that you’re not afraid to be creative and are dedicated to the job. Go the extra mile, put your blood, sweat and tears into your work, and you’ll definitely stand out from the other interns!
4. Make connections!
If your coworkers invite you to a gathering after hours, attend! If it’s summer and school’s out, then you probably don’t have much to do anyway. So attend the gathering or event and socialize. It’s a great way to make friends, but also to meet with people in the field that you’re hoping to establish a career in. If you’re unable to score a job with the company you’re interning at, you might be able to score one with someone you met at an event and talked to about your interests, skills and experience!
5. Try your best to avoid social media while you’re on the job.
It can be a little difficult to keep yourself from scrolling through Instagram or snapping a bored selfie with the dog filter, especially since you might have some free time with nothing to do. But just remember, your boss may not always be watching but if they do see you doing it, it might leave a bad impression. Instead, a good way to spend your time is by dedicating it to doing research about the organization and the people in the office. Unless your internship requires you to be on social media, stay away. Plus, there’ll be so much more to see when you finally check your social media after you haven’t been online for a couple of hours.
Are you an intern right now? Let us know if our tips helped make your internship easier and more productive! And don't forget to give us a like and a share—it keeps us going!
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