Create a Positive First Impression
First impressions are everything. Make sure to show up on time and dress professionally according to the company’s dress code. If you are unsure of the dress code, ask your boss or HR. Keep your workspace organized and clean and put your cell phone away. Beyond the first impression, be sure to put your best foot forward every day.
Take It Seriously
Internships come in many different shapes and sizes. One of our Sales Producers says, “I would say take it seriously whether it’s a paid or a non-paid internship. I was offered a position after my internship back when I was in college upon completion of my internship because I tried and gave my best. The other big thing is you have that employer as a reference when you do complete it to use to your advantage when applying for jobs. An internship is also real-life experience as opposed to just the college experience so take it seriously.”
Do Your Work and Expect Downtime
Complete any and all assignments you are assigned on time and to the best of your ability. It does not matter how easy or complex the assignment is, show that you are willing to do the work. On the other hand, expect downtime. Not all internships are structured, and, in many cases, you will have gaps in your day. Fill this time by helping others and finding jobs to do.
Develop Your Skills and Ask Questions
As you get into your internship and learn what your role is, identify some areas where you feel you could improve. Discuss with your boss how you can best do that while interning and take advantage of any opportunities that are coming your way. It might be a workshop you get to attend or even sitting in on a meeting, make sure to pay attention and learn as much as you can, and ask questions where needed.
Throughout your internship, you will likely be introduced to a lot of people. Use this as a chance to network. Our Marketing Coordinator says, “Meet EVERYONE! You may be stuck doing some basic/boring tasks while being an intern, but no matter what applicable experience you take from your summer, the networking connections you make can travel with you everywhere!”
No matter what your internship is, it is important to maintain your professionalism. Our Social Media Specialist says, “You may want to share your internship on social media, and that is fine. But watch what you are sharing. Nothing on the internet stays private and you never know who is going to see what you say. Keep it professional both in the office and online.”
End on A High Note
As you end your internship, make sure to show your appreciation and leave on a high note. Thank your boss, mentors, or any other individuals who you worked with. A handwritten card goes a long way and is one of those small gestures that will make you rememberable. Make sure to ask those who you worked with to connect with you on LinkedIn, write you recommendations, and to keep in touch.