‘We can teach a student a topic a day, but, if we teach him to learn, he will continue learning all his Life.’
A student needs to plan well and exhibit considerable hard work to be selected as an intern. After selection, a student must understand that the months to come are full of opportunities. It is time to utilize the theoretical knowledge for the work output. You can learn various hard and soft skills and possibly a job offer too. Some interns came across a situation when they have nothing to do. May be it is not their fault. They might have completed the allotted work, and any new work might not be in the pipeline. This is not what they wanted because they do not want to create an impression of being lazy and useless. Also, it is not possible for them to pursue co-workers for work because they can appear unneeded and pointless. The following tips are useful for maximizing the benefits of internships.
1. Make a viable plan
You should discuss with your employer and set specific goals. Then, you can chalk out a feasible plan. This is inclusive of the particular skills that you can develop, the projects that you can work on, the sources to seek guidance and resolve queries, process of getting feedback, method of communication of delays, and adjustment of timelines on an assignment. This is mandatory to prevent any conflict and frustration.
2. Be ready for mistakes
If you make a mistake, you should keep in mind that errors are a part and parcel of the learning curve. If happenings do not occur as per plan, you should take up the responsibility. Further, you should brainstorm possible solutions, which can make it evident that you have leadership qualities.
3. Create a professional network
An internship is a very good period to begin a network.it added a value those in your network. The persons with whom you work can become your personal friends and/or professional contact for a long duration. You must make it a point that other people know who you are and what can you do. For this, you should take an initiative to introduce yourself and also be present at functions. To break the ice with strangers, you can ask a question such as “At the commencement of your career, were you an intern?” or “Which skills are most relevant in this field?”
4. Find a mentor
In the initial phase, you should find out a person who can mentor you.Mentors can see where we need to improve where we often cannotthe mentor should be able to provide you learning opportunities and introduce you to professional networks. This does not imply that the mentor can offer you a complete roadmap to success but can be a great source of information and feedback. After a mentor is selected, you should schedule periodic meetings to boost up your internship.
5. Take active part in work
You should include diligence in your way of work irrespective of whether a task is petty or significant. It is essential to take part in all types of work. In this manner, you can display a good work ethic. People in the office will notice that you are contributing well. Most times, your superiors will provide you the rules and instructions, and you should adhere to them. But, you can also take up some tasks by yourself. This will provide you opportunities to take your own decisions and work in an independent manner rather than being spoon-fed. The crux here is that in the working world, the skill to work independently with a bit of guidance is very essential. For this, you should leave your comfort zone, observe all activities in the office, take the initiative, and extend your abilities. Maximum effort to achieve goal at own level is the way.
6. Learn to think positivity
The work atmosphere is full of stress. To keep the momentum going, you should learn to have a positive outlook. Pat yourself on the back for a work well done. Avoid self-blame when you face a failure. Positivity can decrease the frequency of depression and boost your cardiovascular health.
7. Practice how to work in collaboration
You should develop the skill of collaboration. This consists of setting down expectations, cultivating listening ability, and perfecting communication. For instance, for a meeting, you can draft an agenda. Begin and end the meeting on schedule to prove that you have respect for others’ time. You need to understand that although you are in the lower rung of the hierarchy in an office, you are needed for work, and your work will receive appreciation. You can learn the ability to speak with different persons professionally. For example, your items of talk can be different with a boss or a co-worker.
8. Prepare a draft
You should make it a practice to document your learnings, accomplishments, and ideas. This can also include the details of your accomplishments along with metrics to define your progress. You can do this on a daily or if not, at least on a weekly basis. Daily timesheets provide accurate data and help to get something productive. This document will prove useful when you are writing your resume or requesting your employer to be your reference.
9. Take criticism in the right spirit
When your boss calls you for a performance evaluation, it is often scary. Your evaluation can contain some points of constructive criticism. During this aspect of internship, you should be aware that nothing is personal in the criticism. On the contrary, it is for your own growth and success, which you can leverage to elevate your quality of work.
10. Maintain contact
If the company of your internship and the pertinent work interest you, make it a habit to be in touch with the company. In this way, when an opportunity props up, you will be remembered with high priority. As the internship is about to end, you can express your gratitude to your co-workers and provide them your personal contact information.
After your internship is over, when you apply for a job, you should contact the persons you have worked with in the internship. They can render you recommendations to develop a compelling resume or refer you to the company having the vacancy.
Abhay Burande is proficient in technical writing and content writing with an experience as a writer and an editor for the past 11 years in the Software industry. He is a Technical Content Writer at The IMPALS. He relishes browsing the Internet and listening songs.