Congratulations! You’ve landed an internship. Hopefully, it’s the internship of your dreams. Still, even if it isn’t, it’s an excellent opportunity to gain valuable experience, make connections, and get a clearer idea of the job you may want in the future.
Studies show that people who have internship experience are more likely to be hired and for higher pay. Many companies access their internship programs as a talent pool for a firm’s future hiring activities.
- Fifty-six percent of interns and 40 percent of co-op students turned into full-time, entry-level hires in 2019.
- Employers identify internship experience as a differentiator when choosing between two equally qualified applicants.
- Completing internships increases job offers by 16 percent.
- Internships often lead to a full-time, entry-level job. In 2019, the offer rate for interns was 70.4 percent.
The point of an internship is to hone your talents, meet thought leaders, and with a bit of luck, nab a great job offer. So, what are some ways to rock your internship and get hired in the process?
Tips to Become an Awesome Intern
1. Attitude is More Important than Skills
You were offered an internship for a reason. Your CV stood out among multiple applicants, and you impressed everyone involved in the decision-making process, so they already know you have the required skills. What they want to see is how you approach the work.
Positivity and a willingness to learn go a long way. It’s not uncommon for interns to be assigned grunt work. It’s part of the job. As you’ll learn, it’s part of the job at all levels. Regardless of how exciting the industry, all positions involve some not-so-glamorous tasks. This is where your positive attitude can shine. When you show up each day to tackle new challenges (even the boring ones) with enthusiasm, your manager will notice.
It is especially during these times where your attitude shines through the most to your manager and your team. Remember to smile, don’t take yourself too seriously, and learn something new each day.
2. Be Proactive
If you’ve completed your projects or tasks, don’t wait around for your manager to give you new projects. Take the initiative to look for ways to add value to your team and organization before your manager even asks. It’s an excellent way to demonstrate that you understand the need of your team and the organization.
3. Network, Network, Network
From the first day, make an effort to meet and network with as many people as you can. Take the initiative to start conversations with your colleagues or introduce yourself to someone new from another department. Internships are the best time to network internally and explore what every team does. Ideally, you’re already part of the team you have the most interest in, but if this isn’t the case, go and meet the team that does the work that you are most passionate about!
4. Always Do More Than the Bare Minimum
Employers want to hire people that stand out. They also don’t want those star players to go to different organizations, especially their competition. By proving that you’re more than an “intern,” others will see you as a contributing member of the staff instead of someone with a three-month timeline. Going above and beyond is how you can prove this. Doing more than the bare minimum creates value. By doing so, you can become so much more than an intern; you can become the next great hire.
5. Ask Questions
No one expects you to know everything on your first day at work, and asking questions is the best and quickest way to learn. It lets people know that you’re inquisitive, and it exhibits your willingness to learn, critical thinking capabilities, and interpersonal skills—all highly desired skills for employees.
6. Take Notes
Understandably, you’ll be overloaded with information at the beginning of your internship, so bring along a pen and a notebook wherever you go. Taking notes can help you organize your thoughts and ensure that you don’t miss any pertinent information during briefings and discussions. It also signals that you take your work seriously and are eager to do your job well. While it is convenient, avoid taking notes on your mobile phone as it may be misunderstood that you are texting.
7. Keep Yourself Updated on the Latest News and Happenings of the Company
Being in the know makes you look more involved and current; it also provides you with common topics to start conversations with your colleagues. Before you start your internship, conduct research about the company, news, employees, and working culture. You can begin by reviewing their social media profiles or simply do a search for the company online.
Your new residence will introduce you to many people who are also working on internships. Sharing notes and experiences can be very helpful, and it’s also a great way to bond with other residents. Since 1833 Thompson-Markward Hall has been a place where life-long friendships are born and will continue to be a fantastic place to connect with people from all over the world.
Best wishes for a successful and meaningful internship!