Advice for the Newly Interned.

There is nothing worse than working and seeing no reward. When someone plants a seed they hope that it will grow roots and branches until the point where it can bear fruit. But, if the tree is baron then all the labor would seemed pointless in the end. Even if your internship is not compensating you for your efforts it is important that you generate value for yourself. Take advantage of the opportunities to learn new skills and programs that you otherwise would not have had access to. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about what systems are used and why because any new method that you can add to your own tool belt will only improve your marketability and improve your adaptability. Don’t be shy; if you have the opportunity to make acquaintances with people in other departments there’s no reason not to. Maybe, the IT department isn’t very social at your internship but they might have some good tips and tricks up their sleeves that might make you a better  or more efficient ad buyer. There’s no telling how the connections you make with co-workers might impact your life; having pleasant conversations with someone by the water cooler could lead to a recommendation for your next job. If you enjoy your internship and think that you would want to keep working there it is likely because your personality and the culture of the company are a good match. Therefore it is important to show that you vibe with the rest of the organization as a team player. When there is no more work to be done, ask for some. The ‘Thank you sir may I have another’ mentality will show your steadfast dedication to delivering quality work and capability to handle more responsibility. Be careful not to bite off more than you can chew because swamping yourself with too much work will only serve to make you look irresponsible. When there’s not even extra work to be done try to brainstorm some ways that you can add value to the company that perhaps have gone overlooked, if there is minor issue that you can solve present your case to your boss. The first law in Robert Greene’s classic, The Laws of Power,  the first law is to never outshine the master. Even if you think you might be more knowledgeable on a certain subject it is important to share said knowledge with tact. The last thing you want is to be looked at with disdain for doing something that by all appearances was for the benefit of the company.

One comment

  1. Jared,
    I definitely agree with what you said, being sociable and polite can lead to the connections you need when you’re on the job hunt. In addition I also enjoyed the bit about biting off more work than you can chew, I tend to accept any task given to me by my boss but at a certain point if I’m extremely busy there’s no shame in explaining that to a boss. Thanks for the write up, this gave me some perspective on agency life.

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