Corporate exposure also comes in handy when you are ready to begin your career; not only does it add weight to your resume’ but it also minimizes start-up surprises.
While most universities in Pakistan have made internship a mandatory degree requirement there is growing awareness amongst students to take up voluntary ones. It is indeed a healthy trend that students are realizing what this short term experience can do for their career. The question that we will attempt to answer is how to find internship opportunities and to make the most of them.
How to find a relevant internship:
Start your search on the digital and print media. A number of organizations prefer to post internship requirements either on their career portals or through leading newspapers. If the organization of your choice has used none of the aforementioned options to promote their internship program reach out to their HR department by calling in or sending an email to express your interest and also to explain how you can add value.
In parallel do capitalize on your own network (working professionals in your family and circle of friends, teachers,university career office, etc.) andattend any university based or commercial job fairs where you can meet up with potential employers.
Making the most out of Internships:
Here are a few tips that would help you maximize your benefit from internships:
- Be on time - If you’re getting late, inform your line manager/supervisor.
- Respect deadlines – Try to complete projects it within timelines; if there is a chance of an over-run, let your line manager know about it in advance.
- Keenly observe – How professionals interact and communicate verbally and over emails to understand how corporate communication takes place.
- Discuss your career aspirations – Talk to your peers and superiors; invite conversations that offer pros and cons of your career choice.
- Find opportunities to join your team outside of work - Talk about things other than work such as your and their interests – build rapport. This will put the foundation of your professional network in place.
- Take initiative - Whenever you have idle time, ask for more work.
- Invite healthy debates – Discuss professional topics, without getting into arguments or losing your temper.
- Optimize your use of office equipment and supplies - Most companies have clearly documented policies on use of stationery and equipment – read and follow them to the letter.
- Keep personal use of your cell phone at the minimum - Idle conversation is the worst enemy of productivity.
- Show unconditional respect – Not only for company policies, but also for it’s decorum. Avoid gossiping in the workplace.
- Lastly, maintain the contacts that you build during your internship – Meet up with colleagues, occasionally call in or share information of mutual professional and personal interest.
If you’ve already had internship experience, we’d be very interested in hearing your internship story in the comments below. If you have any questions or comments about internships or need advice, please feel free to write to us.