8 months ago, I walked through the doors of TPN as a college student, who had recently finished their junior year, ready to take on this new journey—my first internship.
8 months later, I am a changed person.
Starting your first internship impacts you in a way that school never does—It’s experience in the real world. I also learned that what is necessary for an intern is also important to the established professional:
Be ready for anything
It’s tough to enter a new space and have no idea what you are going to encounter, but the trick is to be ready for whatever is thrown at you. Be ready to pick up whatever is put down and run with it. New concepts, new ideas, new terms—you may not understand it your first encounter, but it will be useful later on. Go into everything you do with an open mind because you never know when you’ll experience something that will change the way you think and act, in your personal and professional life.
Learn, and learn some more
Everything you do can be a learning experience. Whether you’re attempting to craft the perfect email, build the best campaign, give a winning pitch, or trying to make the sale—you are learning. We are never too old to learn something new. Throughout our lives, no matter our age, we will always have room for improvement. In all you experience, find the lesson hidden within and take note of it.
Meet new people at every turn
Network. Network. Network. I’ve heard it in school, I’ve heard it from friends and family and I’ve experienced the benefits. Introduce yourself to new faces; get to know those, whose faces are familiar, a little bit better and never hesitate to build a connection. There will always be some kind of benefit behind it.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to others
Being in a new role comes with obstacles. There are challenges that you may not have a solution to, at least one that comes to mind right away. Asking for the help of others can give you a new view of your challenge, lead you to a resolution and even make you completely change the path you were headed down. Everyone has a different way of doing things, and sharing ideas with others is going to always benefit both parties.
Your Intern ‘Point of View’
It’s an intern that goes into work ready for anything, wanting to learn, with hopes to meet new people, and ready to lean on others when they need it—A guppy in a big sea of experienced fish.
For those of you out in the world that have your 5th to 25th work anniversaries… do you still have your ‘Intern Point of View’?
Even though you may feel like an expert in your field, or comfortable in your role, you are never too experienced, never to knowledgeable, and never have a big enough network to not have an intern attitude. Go into all you do ready to pick up anything that is thrown at you, you may have been in the business for 25 years but that doesn’t mean you’ve seen it all. Never stop learning! There is never a point in your career where you won’t need to learn something new. Meet people. Your network is ever growing, you can never have too many connections and when you can network—network! There’s no telling who you’ll meet that can help you. Last but not least, reaching out to others for help should never be looked down upon. It doesn’t mean you’re uneducated or behind, it’s quite the opposite. It’s a smart move—trust me, a new outlook from someone can change everything.
Whether you’re new to the real world, or have been in it for decades—never lose sight of those attitudes you need to get the most out of your work. Never lose your ‘Intern Point of View.’
By: RACHEL CHASSAY