This blog was written by Taylor Egizi
Most of us have been there: that scary call that leads us to a nerve-racking interview for the chance at our dream internship. However, it is only when we do not get the opportunity that we truly think about what we could have done better or what we did to prevent us from landing that internship. Not until my employer told me that I got the job because of the way I went about submitting my resume and requesting a job did I think about why I got the opportunity to work for her.
Currently, I am interning for a marketing company that has me researching restaurants, retail, and beverages in the Los Angeles area. My job is to cold call these businesses and ask about their marketing plan and find ways for their company to need our marketing services. Cold calling is a terrifying experience, because I face rejection and attitudes with almost every call. Even though I am nervous making calls, my employer told me to give off the tone like I am talking to one of my friends and telling him or her about an interesting product that would potentially be good for him or her. By relating to my potential client on a personal level, even if it is as cheesy as having the same name as my mom, the client will feel more of a connection and willingness to listen to what I have to say.
Here are a few more pointers that I have learned while being an intern:
1. Be aggressive and persistent when applying for a job or internship. It is acceptable to tell someone how much you would love to work and learn from him or her; flatter them.
2. Take yourself outside of your comfort zone often, because that is where you see the most growth.
3. When asked if you can fulfill a certain tasks, say yes and figure out how to do it later. Never turn down an opportunity to try something new that will benefit your portfolio and work experience.
4. Relate with people on a personal level and be yourself. When you do not know someone, give him or her something to remember you by, like a radiant smile or interesting portfolio piece.
5. Be upfront with people and do not lie to make yourself sound better. As easy as that may sound, most times when we don’t know the answer, we tell people whatever we think sounds best. People can usually tell or will find out if they have been lied to, which does not look good on your part or the company’s.
6. Lastly, don’t forget about the follow up! After an interview it is essential to write both an email and card of appreciation and thanks. Also, follow through with keeping the connection strong between people you meet and work for; social networking is everything.
Even though tasks can seem unrelated to what you want to do or absolutely scare you to death, it is important to focus on how it will improve your skills and how to train yourself to step outside of your own comfort zone so that you can see growth in yourself.