After graduating from college, most students are faced with the question – What’s next? Studies usually involve more theoretical than practical knowledge, which does not make students sufficiently qualified for current employment, and months or even years of volunteering are not something that graduates look forward to. What is the solution then?
Graduates (but also those in their final years of study) prefer to opt for professional internships, which usually involve a combination of paid and unpaid work, and they also offer the best option for employment. The internship experience can be very complex and bring you much more than a potential job offer.
The world of adults
You may have thought that by finishing high school and coming to college, you left behind your childhood and entered the world of adults, but studies are really only the first step towards growing up.
“Faculty is not obligatory, you are here of your own free will” is a sentence that professors often repeat and which knows how to irritate students, but that does not diminish its truthfulness. While studying, going to lectures and studying for a colloquium is optional, but going to work must not depend on your mood and agreement with friends.
On the first day of the internship, you will receive certain duties, working hours, and deadlines for performing the tasks that you will have to respect. You may not be working to feed your family yet, but during the practical training, you will learn what responsibility is and how to deal with obligations, which will introduce you to the world of adults and the way it works.
The importance of the community, not the individual
Of learning, during the study benefit, you had only you yourself, and your success did not affect the other, but it is something that is changing the moment when you come to practice. You become part of a team, in which each individual has a role, which is why your success is the success of the whole team.
For this reason, good communication at work is extremely important, so it is an aggravating circumstance if you get an internship in a company that does not give importance to teamwork. According to Aleksandra, who went through a marketing internship at the global startup company Playerhunter, the experiences of her older colleagues and their desire to share them with her made it much easier for her to start an internship.
“Before coming to the internship at Playerhunter, I was informed about the work of the company and learned that it is a startup designed to connect football players and football experts, who supported really important names from the world of football such as Andrei Shevchenko, Luis Figo, Josi Benajun, and GLS which has contracts with Fabio Cannavaro and Alessandro del Piero. Although I thought that the opportunity to work on the development of such a social network was really great, the nervousness was logically present. However, there was no reason to be afraid, because I was more than pleasantly surprised by the welcome from the employees. “
The support of authorities, team leaders, and other employees from the first moment of practice is extremely important. Practitioners should not be afraid to ask a question or offer their own idea and solution to a task. They should also know from day one what is expected of them.
“After Sneza, the team leader took me through the office and introduced me to my colleagues, there was a conversation about the job they would train me for, and then the first tasks. Considering that everyone was very pleasant and that everything went well, I was quite satisfied with the first day of practice and I had positive impressions. Before I came to Playerhunter, the experiences of colleagues who are already in some internships told me that good communication from the start is very important for further progress.”
When it comes to startup companies such as Playerhunter, the teamwork experience you gain there is of great importance for the development of your business and communication skills. Alexandra points out that the fact that she felt part of the team from the start helped her to free herself and develop creatively.
“The biggest advantage of working in a startup is that we have the freedom to be creative, to contribute to the company, and come up with ideas that we can implement. Another great advantage is the relaxed atmosphere and work without any stress. The work environment is open, flexible, we hang out, communicate, share experiences and knowledge, organize team buildings, and even table tennis tournaments that we have in one of the offices. I am quite satisfied with how working at Playerhunter works and that is why these are the main reasons why I see myself in the long run as a startup company. ”
Teamwork is not something that is valued only in startup companies, so you should count on it for whatever practice you apply for. Working in a team will not only improve your communication skills but also your organizational skills.
Multitasking is a necessary skill
Internships where everyone does only one job still exist, but the opportunity for multitasking will surely bring you much more knowledge and skills. You come to practical training just to learn new things, and it will be much easier for you to progress in an area if you know how all its parts work.
It is not so much important that you really do multiple jobs at the same time, as it is important that you understand them. It is important to know how the programs you are working in work to eliminate potential problems during work, as well as to know which step precedes and which step follows after your part of the team task, in order to prevent or correct possible mistakes in work.
Different tasks will help you feel more capable, cancel a colleague who did not come to work for some reason or come to his aid. One of the most important tips when starting an internship is not to turn down new assignments, which of course are about work. Not only will this help you progress, but it will show your authorities that you are ready to accept new tasks and that they can count on you.
Alexandra says that the opportunities for various tasks helped her to show herself during the internship, and then she got a job.
“From the beginning of the internship until now, I have been given different tasks and I have always found help and understanding from my colleagues, which meant a lot to me because it helped me to master the tasks and make progress. I started working at Playerhunter as a marketing assistant and then moved to the position of the administrative technician, and that’s exactly what I like because here we have the opportunity to learn and get to know different jobs and gain a broad knowledge. ”
When it comes to other practices, similar to Playerhunter, students’ experiences show that the opportunity to acquire new skills and progress is the biggest benefit of practical training and that such opportunities are a great start to a career.
Opportunity for the first important decisions
The practice for most is the first confrontation for business obligations, and thus business decisions. You will certainly ask yourself at least some of these questions during your internship:
Which practice is best for me?
Will a practice that does not offer employment bring me any benefit?
Will I learn something new?
Will I have the opportunity to show my creativity and knowledge?
Can I progress in this practice?
Should I agree to volunteering and unpaid internships?
Is it wise to get your first job offer?
The answers to all these questions depend on several factors. Don’t be exclusive and refuse to volunteer if you have no other options, because they can be very important for your further career, and represent a great item in your CV. On the other hand, if you see that a certain internship does not offer you any progress, be free to reject it, because maybe a little more search separates you from the internship in a better company.
The internship in any case represents an opportunity to gain different experiences, both in terms of work and in communication with people, and only after some practical training will you be fully ready to get a job and do the dream job in the best possible way.