Do it yourself.

As an intern, you’re going to get projects that you feel aren’t worth your while. You are doing tasks that may seem boring and repetitive. These jobs are responsibilities your co-workers do not want to do. Nonetheless, these jobs still need to be completed. No matter what position you obtain in your career, there are always going to be tasks you’d rather not do but have to get done. This is especially frustrating to the aspiring intern who desperately wants to prove him or herself. To ensure success, you want to make sure you’re going above and beyond and integrating yourself into the company as a whole. Start off my completing those boring and menial tasks with a smile.

During week 7 of my internship, I experienced a small slump. I started to feel like a robot. I thought to myself, “Is my work adding any value to my internship? Myself?” I took this problem into my own hands. I put pen to paper and brainstormed a few different fun and unique marketing tactics that inspired me. I picked the most valuable, inspiring and realistic one and created a thorough plan. Within the next few days, I pitched the idea to my supervisor and he was impressed. He gave me the green light to go ahead and tackle the whole project by myself. Ever since then, I’ve had a lot more control over my projects.

Instead of waiting to get cool tasks assigned to you, try something different and assign them to yourself. Find ways to integrate things that inspire you, into the tasks at your internship site. Present your plan of attack to your supervisor and you may surprise yourself with the outcome.

-Jesi Wu

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10 Responses to Do it yourself.

  1. joefschr says:

    All about taking initiative! My blog post early in the term talked about this. Your situation was different though, basically creating a plan by yourself and presenting it to your boss takes guts, but it also makes you look bad ass. They are thinking you are working on what has been assigned to you, and then you come to them with new marketing tactics, and as long as you are still completing the tasks that have been assigned, it will show that you get your work done, and your turning your wheels and thinking of ways to improve yourself and the company at the same time too. It’s all about going out of your comfort zone!

  2. nikkimaroney says:

    Sounds like you’re kind of a rock star! Great work, Jesi – you’re really going out of your way to take initiative. I’ve found that whenever I run into a slump I try and teach myself a new skill that will benefit both me and the organization I’m working for. For example, last week my supervisor asked if I could help create a Google Map for our organization (which required knowledge of both Google Maps and Excel). So instead of waiting around for the IT guy to respond to my Google Maps email, I decided to take initiative by teaching myself Excel with an online tutorial. In order to maximize our internship opportunity we have to take initiative (and it doesn’t hurt to also benefit ourselves in the long-run). Thanks for sharing!

  3. jlandre2014 says:

    That’s awesome, Jesi! I kinda wish I did more stuff like this during my internship. It definitely shows initiative and is a great way to impress your supervisor while also giving yourself something fun to work on. Nice work!

  4. hannahosborn says:

    Great way to take initiative! I’ll definitely have to try that next time. Whenever I’ve been assigned tasks that no one else wants to do, I always try to look for a way to add value for myself and the company. For example, last week I was asked to help with a new business initiative. It started out with just organizing contact information into a spreadsheet, but I took the liberty of researching additional contacts that fit with the type of clients we were looking for, which ultimately increased the reach of our new business mailer.

  5. Nice, Jesi! That is great that you took your destiny into your own hands. Sometimes I question whether I need to only do projects I may not want to do because I need to start at the bottom like everyone else, but creating your own projects may be what makes you stand out from the crowd.

  6. I am glad I am not alone. For a while I thought my work was pointless but soon I learned that I need to do the best job possible because my work is the groundwork for the senior managers. If I don’t do a good job, it makes their job tougher. I just have to look at everything as a learning experience and that this menial project is preparing me for future jobs and is currently helping my supervisors. Thanks for writing this!

  7. Rachel says:

    Thanks for the mid-slump tips! I did something similar where I pitched some ideas to my boss because i felt the exact same way. Great advice to go after and make your own opportunities! -Rachel

  8. jbrosy says:

    This is a pretty inspiring post, Jesi! Going out of your way to create your own projects shows you actually care and aren’t just there to go through the motions. I’m sure your boss was extremely impressed by your initiative. I have definitely felt there are some days that I’m not doing much to further myself within the company I work for at the moment but I’ll be taking your advice to push myself forward. Thanks, Jesi! Great post.

  9. Liana Berke says:

    Wow, great job! I completely agree about getting in the swing of things and starting to feel like a robot. As an intern, it can sometimes feel as if you are doing the same tasks over and over again. I am definitely going to take your advice to heart and look to see how I can think more outside of the box!

  10. kativanloo says:

    Way to go Jesi. Not only did you show you could provide value for the company but you also created a project you know you would enjoy tackling. They are lucky to have you! Definitely will keep this in mind as I continue in the working world. Thanks for your post!

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