5 Tips To Stand Out At Your Internship

Internships are a vital step in developing yourself professionally, but how do you seamlessly transition your work life from stocking shelves or working registers to that 9-5 desk job? At the beginning of this year, I began my first internship experience as a marketing assistant with the University. The following are five of the most important things I have learned over the past eight months at my internship:

 

Check, double check, and triple check everything you ever send to anyone ever.

There is nothing more embarrassing then sending an important email to your boss with a grammatical error, or even worse, having it be addressed to the wrong person entirely. While mistakes happen, little errors can be easily avoided given a little extra time. One helpful tip that I have found in writing in general is installing the application Grammarly, which is an application added to your browser that acts as a writing assistant. Ensuring that documents and emails are well structured and error free is a great way to show off your communications skills, as well as present yourself professionally.

 

Take advantage of all available resources

When applying for jobs, it is important to have a skill set that will make you stand out in a stack of resumes. Utilizing the resources available to you at your internship is a great way to develop skills that the marketplace is demanding from new hires. Never think you’ll have to use excel in your creative marketing job? Think again. Learn Microsoft Office, the Adobe Suite, and honestly anything else that you can get your hands on. You’re bound to have a little bit of downtime every once in a while, so why not put it to use?

 

Ask for more

On that note, don’t be hesitant to ask for more at your internship. While it is important to be a self-starter, it is equally as important to take the initiative to make yourself of use to the organization. The more projects you work on and duties you fulfill, the more you will learn in your position. Many times internships are short experiences- you’ll want to make the best use of your time while you are there.  

 

Be a yes person.          

This one is pretty straight forward... If someone asks you for help with something, you say yes. Can you make ten copies of the agenda for the staff meeting on Tuesday? How about record the minutes for a major conference call? Absolutely you can- and they will be the best copies and most detailed notes that have ever been brought into fruition. It is important to remember that there is something to be learned from everyone and every task, and also that everyone you work with is always watching. The way you perform small tasks determine to what capacity big projects come your way.

 

Get to know individuals outside of your department.

This has arguably been one of the most important aspects of my internship experience. Starting out, my day to day duties of my position remained fairly limited and held within a small department of our division. While I loved the work I was doing, I was highly interested in learning more. Getting to know individuals outside of my marketing nook led me to some great individuals, and also helped me see the big picture of our division. I was fortunate enough to land an internship with industry professionals that see my potential and want to help me further develop my skill set. Not only does this help to grow your network, but it helped me to realize that I have a passion in areas other than marketing. Being selected to work on additional projects outside of my department has helped shine a light on my strengths and weaknesses, along with overall what I might enjoy doing after graduation.

 

Your internship can be an incredible experience, so long as you know how to set yourself up for success. Apply early and apply often. The experiences you have in college are what is going to set you up for a successful career post-graduation.