Nothing about this experience – not the long commute during rush hour, the expensive city parking or the long hours at a desk – has made me feel like a young working professional quite like logging into my Skype account last Wednesday in anticipation for a call from the University of Oregon PRSSA chapter.
Just over a month ago, I was on the other side of that screen, listening intently to professionals sharing their tidbits of advice and diligently live tweeting the entire thing. This time, I was the one sharing my story and offering up the advice I had learned in the two and half weeks I had been in my internship. Surprisingly, I found I already had a lot to share.
In just two and a half weeks, I had learned firsthand about workplace dynamics and best practices as an intern. Here are a few of the tips I shared with my PRSSA peers:
- It’s ok to make mistakes, but it’s important to make mistakes you can learn from. Try to avoid mistakes that result from not paying attention to details, such as misspellings in email communication.
- Always spend more time on an assignment than you think you need, especially in the first few weeks of a new internship or job. It’s expected that it will take you a little longer to accomplish something than a seasoned professional so spend the extra time going above and beyond their expectations. With every assignment or project, think about what you can add to get a head start on the next step, make someone else’s job a little easier or demonstrate your critical thinking skills.
- Never be afraid to ask for help prioritizing. It’s better to spend five extra minutes getting help prioritizing your tasks than it is to spend all your time on something that isn’t all that important and letting something else slip just because you’re unfamiliar with the deadlines and levels of importance.
Find more tips for standing out as an intern here.
– Hannah Osborn