You’ve invested the time and effort into landing an awesome internship at your dream company, and you don’t want all that work and your whole summer to go to waste. How do you make make the most of it?
Stand out from the crowd with these tips for summer internship success:
To get the most out of your summer internship, you need to be clear on exactly what you expect from it. Make a list of objectives to accomplish, and periodically review them throughout the summer. Consider sharing your goals during your interview or with your internship supervisor to make sure you’re all on the same page. Sharing your objectives will not only impress them with your ambition and organization, but enable them to help you stay on track to achieve them.
To succeed at an internship, it’s crucial to start with the basics. Get to the office on time, and follow all the procedures and duties that are required of you. Try to mimic the successful employees around you. If they show up early to meetings, use a certain font in their memos, or dress more formally than the handbook tells you to, follow their example.
Some of your job duties may seem trivial or menial, but that’s to be expected in many internships. Even if the job is not what you were expecting, or you don’t enjoy the work, stay positive and do your best. Your boss could prove to be a great reference, which is a powerful tool for your future job search.
Networking can be a scary word, but it really just means getting to know people and developing a mutually-beneficial relationship. Try setting a goal for yourself to meet 20 new people over the summer, or one new person a week.
Get to know the successful employees at the company by asking them about their education and career path, what they do and don’t like about the job, and if they have any advice for someone who wants to follow in their path. Be gracious and let them know you appreciate their time, and they’ll be more willing to help you out.
Keep in touch with your new contacts even after you’ve completed your internship. Connect with them on LinkedIn or through email, or even ask them to meet for coffee sometime.
Even if your internship doesn’t go exactly as you expect, or if it turns out you change your career path, you can still make the most of it. The experience you take away and the connections you make can help you for years to come. With these tips in mind, you’re sure to succeed at your summer internship!
For next steps on turning your internship to employment, check out this article: Your 5-Point Strategy to Go From Intern to Employee
Adams, S. (2013, July 2). How To Make The Most Of Your Internship. Forbes. Retrieved May 6, 2014, from Forbes
Making the most of your internship. (n.d.). PwC. Retrieved May 6, 2014, from PwC