Once I Get An Internship, Then What?
Top 10 Tips for Interns:
- Don't be afraid to talk with people. Don't be intimidated because you are a student. People are sometimes too busy to roll out the red carpet, so you have to make the first move to talk with co-workers and supervisors.
- Ask for things to do. Don't wait to be told what to do. Solving problems and taking initiative are the best ways to stand out from the crowd.
- Learn all you can about the industry. Talk with people in different departments as well as clients and vendors.
- Read everything you can get your hands on. You won't find everything you need to know in the training manual. Reading contracts, letters, memos, press releases, and trade publications help you become informed on all elements of the organization.
- Don't gripe about the grunt work. All internships have some and there is always something to learn by doing it. Everything has a purpose, so learn how the small tasks fit into the big picture. However, don't be afraid to ask for more responsibility.
- Milk the fact that you are a student. As a student you aren't threatening and can have more access and opportunities than a full time employee. Everyone wants to help a student learn.
- Hitch your wagon to a star. Learn from the people who are the superstar performers and most respected individuals in the office.
- Get in the information loop. Decisions aren't always made in a conference room.
- Ask to attend meetings and events. You will learn how things really get done.
- Don't burn any bridges. You never know when you will see someone later in your career.
-- Adapted from Bradley Richardson, author of JobSmarts for TwentySomethings.