Subject: Why fit in when you were born to stand out (in the office)
The one part about interning that I do not like is the fact that I have to leave after only a short amount of time. It seems that once we interns learn how to do everything and make relationships with the people there, we have to up-and-leave and start all over again somewhere else. But the thing that always makes me feel better is knowing that I made a lasting impression on the company and that – hopefully – they’ll remember me afterwards. Here are some tips on how to stand out as an intern while also blending into the company.
I know what you’re thinking, “Tessa, duh, of course I’ll work hard.” But I need you to take this one seriously. It can be quite easy to just do the tasks assigned and breeze your way through the weeks, but that is not how you will stand out. Especially if there are other interns, you want to be the one who is working the hardest. That means using your initiative, completing work to the best of your ability and always asking for more responsibility and assignments to do.
BE KIND AND PERSONABLE
This one also seems like a no brainer but I have found that not all interns (or people, to be honest) are kind to one another. Smile when you speak to people or pass them in the office. Strike up a conversation with your manager or co-worker. Ask them how their day is going. Being remembered for how kind you are is really special to a company who sees 4-5 different interns a year.
Watch how the permanent employees interact with each other. I don’t want to say eavesdrop (ok that is what we are saying), but the second I overheard my supervisors talking about The Bachelor, I knew I had my “in.” I – kindly – inserted myself into the conversation and we all laughed and chatted about the reality show and they eventually started asking my opinion on other things pop culture. This creates a level playing field; you’ve found things in common and can now talk about stuff other than work.
Odds are, you applied to this internship because you were passionate about it and thought you would enjoy it. I, too, have fallen prey to taking a position in a department that is not what I wanted to do, but I made the best of it and really tried to stay passionate about the work I was doing. The second you write it off, people will notice. If you stay passionate and seem to be enjoying the work, your supervisors will take notice of this as well.
Bottom line is don’t slack off and don’t be afraid to assert yourself. Being a part of a company for only a few months, it can be easy to just breeze through it without making any meaningful relationships. Try your best and be kind and be yourself.
Keep grinding, loves.