One of the things which stick around throughout college is Internship. Many professional courses require students to engage in internship programs, not only for gaining knowledge and practical skills but also for future job opportunities. Because of so many things an Internship can provide, students are always on a look-out for excellent and productive internships.
This being said, having an internship does not suffice if you do not make the best out of it. Do not expect to learn and gain positive feedback from co-interns and superiors just because you are there in the program. You will have to walk an extra mile to make sure that you stand out, and I have a few tips which might help you.
Here are five tips which can help in successfully going about your internship:
- Socialize with your co-interns and supervisors
The first thing is the introduction. Make sure that you introduce yourself to co-interns and your supervisor(s) with whom you are assigned. You should also consider introducing yourself to the other staff in the workplace.
You should know that the first impression counts a great deal. The way you introduce yourself both verbally and physically often ends up influencing the decisions of those around you. If you are polite and respectful to the people around, you should expect a similar treatment as well.
One important thing to note: do not go overboard. It is still a professional setting, and you should avoid being too informal with everyone, especially supervisors.
- Be Punctual and Responsive
Two things which are essential attributes in a good candidate for any professional job are punctuality and responsiveness. We will talk about each of them one-by-one.You might be an intern but that does not mean that work is less important for you than your supervisors and their colleagues. Make sure you are on time, and when you are not, ensure that you have communicated the reasons for the same. Also, this punctuality is expected in terms of completion of work assigned. The ability to effectively utilize time and meet deadlines is a great asset.
Responsiveness, on the other hand, is an inclination to take up work. As an intern, you should expect work from your supervisors. At the same time, supervisors might expect some efforts from you to take up work. Always ensure that you see your supervisor once a day to inquire whether there is anything you could do.
- Set Goals
You need to work hard, and hard work is reflected when you put your head into something and work on it sincerely. When you start interning, you will get work. Do not do that work as something that you are supposed to do because of the fact that you are an intern. Instead, consider it an opportunity to learn something.
Invest your time and energy into understanding and doing your work diligently. Ask your supervisor what his time table is; what areas he is dealing that day; and whether you can help him. Take up work and set goals.
For example, if you are an intern in a law firm which deals in intellectual property, try figuring out an area in that field which you do not know or have not read much about. Set a target that you would learn as much as you can. Rope in the assistance of your supervisor—a good supervisor will surely appreciate your efforts to learn something new aside from regular work.
- Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone
Many interns have a tendency to think that they deserve some slack because they are not professionals. While I agree that many internship places leech energy out of their interns and make them work ruthlessly, I also reject the idea of lazying around and doing work as per one’s convenience.
You should be prepared to assist your supervisor whenever he needs you. If he asks you to stay late in the office and that there is no reasonable excuse you have to not to, you should stay back. Be involved. Your involvement is indicative of your ability to participate keenly in the work process—and these kinds are the candidates whom good workplaces look for.
- Be A Professional
You are not perfect; even when you become a professional, you will commit mistakes. There is no way you can vouch for perfection. So, being an intern, you should expect (not necessarily, though) angry or negative feedback from your supervisors.
It is my advice to not react to that feedback; instead, consider them constructively and learn from your mistakes. I know, it is a cliché suggestion, but the simplest things in life are the most difficult to do.
If you are professional and your supervisor is professional, things will eventually become better. What your supervisor wants to see is whether you do not give in to pressure and accept your vulnerability to mistakes. Hence, do not behave like a brat!
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