This blog post was written by guest blogger Kara Hagan, a senior at Florida State University, majoring in Marketing and Human Resources. Follow her on Twitter @karahagan
Many of you are smack in the middle of your internships and these 4 tips will help you get through them! These tips may be obvious to any intern, but when you start to get comfortable with your position they can become easily forgotten. So, always remember to be professional, timely, organized, and polite and grab your internship by the horns!
1. Be Professional: When you are meeting office employees, other interns, or company clients always offer a firm handshake and make sure you make eye contact. Talk with a purpose. Use a moderate voice level and know what you’re talking about. If you are extremely shy, look at this as an opportunity to test yourself. Speak up and have faith in what you have to say. You have this internship for a reason; they saw something appealing in you! No reason to shy away from offering up ideas or strategies. It is also important to remember professionalism when writing emails. Our generation spends an enormous amount of time conversing through technology (Facebook, Twitter, text messages, etc.) so it’s understandable to caught up in using technology slang, but leave the TTYL’s for your friends!
2. Be Timely: Being early is on time and being on time is late. This is especially true when it comes to showing up to work. You should never be walking through the door at 8:30 if your start time is 8:30. Besides, showing up early is an easy way to make a great impression! It shows you have dedication and interest in your opportunity. Also, keep in mind being timeliness in the completion of tasks and projects, even if it’s a minor task, such as filing or typing up an email. Nothing screams careless more than taking an hour to file when it should take only 30 minutes.
3. Be Organized: Keep a planner, use the calendar on your computer, or use your phone; whatever it takes! Always keep track of deadlines, meetings, and projects you’re working on. List making can help you keep track of these things as well. Being organized also entails knowing where things are. Nothing is worse than having your coordinator request a document from you that you have no idea where you put it. Being organized corresponds with being timely. If you are extremely organized you will have your projects completed on a timely basis.
4. Be Polite: No matter whom you work with, whom you talk to, or whom you meet at the office water fountain always be polite! This sounds obvious but you wouldn’t imagine how many people forget this. Offer a smile to everyone you come in contact with and talk to anyone who initiates conversation. Nothing is is worse than talking to someone who doesn’t respond, rude! Also, forgo gossiping. It is unprofessional and extremely impolite. Another good idea is to send hand-written thank you notes when you complete your internship. A thank you note is a polite way to express your gratitude for the opportunity and makes you stand out from the others.
As you finish up your internship keep these 4 simple tips in mind to leave a lasting impression!