Learn to Adapt 

Within the first few days of my internship, I thought I knew how the rest of my time there was going to go. A week later, my responsibilities and expectations shifted. Now with just about a month left, things are changing again, and I’m sure it won’t be the last! One of thing things I fear from a job is being stuck in a never ending routine, doing the same things day in and day out with no new challenges. But I don’t think I’ll have to worry about that in this profession.

adaptOf course, change can also be demanding in the workplace. It can feel like it’s hard to get caught up on tasks or knowing what your supervisors expect from you. Yet it can also give you the chance to become proficient in adapting to your surroundings.  Employers aren’t looking for team members who never take on new responsibilities or take advantage of opportunities that will advance them in the company.

An article by an employment company lists 4 ways to turn change into an opportunity for success and career advancement:

  • Demonstrate your flexibility
  • Be a versatile employee
  • Communicate Purposefully
  • Maintain a positive attitude

My supervisor recently told me the best way to get hired from an internship is to make sure the company sees you as an invaluable component they couldn’t survive without. Doing the same entry level intern tasks will make it hard to become that needed person in the office. So try asking your supervisor what other tasks you can take on or help with. If you see a need that could be filled in the workplace, be the one to stand up and take it on yourself. The next time your department undergoes any type of change, think of a way to use it for your advantage and adapt your actions accordingly.

As author and project manager James P. Lewis said, “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.”

Joanna Evoniuk

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5 Responses to Learn to Adapt 

  1. pdxsx says:

    I’ve been telling you guys the same thing and I cannot emphasize this advice enough: “My supervisor recently told me the best way to get hired from an internship is to make sure the company sees you as an invaluable component they couldn’t survive without.”

    Great post, Joanna!

  2. I was just at a staff meeting for 45 minutes and barely said a word the entire time. I felt too inexperienced to really include my input with what everyone was saying. I wish I had read this post before, because it would have helped me get the confidence to participate more. It can be difficult putting yourself out there when you feel as if your skills are easily dispensable, or if you are worried about saying something stupid.

  3. madelinestone says:

    I am so thankful for all the advice we have received this term from Josh, Lindsay, and from Alexander Levit’s book “They Don’t Teach Corporate in College.” The advice that has made the largest impact for me recently is to ask for other ways you can help. This is something that I initially found to be quite daunting but once I took a deep breath and did it I was surprised how easy it was. For me the saying, “ask and you shall receive,” has rung true. The experience was relatively painless and opened a new opportunity for me to take on. Now I will be more confident when the next opportunity to ask how I can contribute more comes along.

  4. Great post! One of the most valuable lessons we have learned from being members of the PDXSX program is to make yourself invaluable. As interns we are expected to prove ourselves or in other words make ourselves priceless. The company has trained us and as long as we continue to prove ourselves and show our excellency, it will be in the company’s best interest to hire us.

  5. So many great points here. I totally agree. I think it is so important to apply yourself in that way and be willing to take on different things. I really love the versatility in my job too, it is really valuable to work with different people in the office. I absolutely love your quote, makes so much sense and its so simple. I think your advice for getting hired is incredibly valuable, I have tried to do things to go the extra mile, I just hope its enough!

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