National Intern Day
If you’re a high school or college graduate, you understand the value of classroom learning. If you are a hiring manager, you know how important experience and exposure is to career development and in choosing a great candidate.
An internship can bridge the gap between classroom learning and the exposure and hands-on experience that the world of work has to offer. An internship prepares, connects, and allows you to gain the knowledge needed, not only to jump-start your career but also to gain practical skills, resources, and confidence. If you are currently in or plan to enter an internship, whether thru your school, a social or professional organization, or relationships, there are important things you need to know.
Research the company or organization hosting the internship, and the people with whom you will be working. Learn about the field or industry and various competitors. Be prepared to ask great questions, and most of all be sure to listen.
Be friendly. Go in with a great attitude, enthusiasm, and good energy. Remember to be courteous. Interpersonal skills are critical on internships. Watch others interact to help gauge whether interactions are appropriate and effective.
Understand the corporate culture. Familiarize yourself with the formal dress code but also pay attention to how the code is actually implemented. Be sure you are giving your best impression – whether the dress code is casual or not, try not to be too casual. Stay away from jeans and make sure your hair, make-up, and jewelry are appropriate for the work environment.
Tardiness at the workplace is a definite NO. Try to arrive at least 15 minutes early. Display your dedication to being there, willingness to learn all you can, and intention to work. Do not be the first one to leave. Rushing out shows a lack of commitment. Familiarize yourself with the company protocols for lateness and absences.
As your internship comes to an end, it is very important and impressive for you to show your gratitude for the experience. A thank you card, a thoughtful letter, a small gift, or even an invitation to lunch, are all great ways to express your appreciation for the opportunity. This is also a great way to be remembered and an excellent strategy for creating long-term relationships.
The ultimate goal at the end of your internship is to the pave a way for you to be invited back to the company permanently. You want all with whom you interacted to remember your overall presentation, social skills, work ethic, and eagerness to be a productive member of the team.