Be Their Friend

My last piece of advice to any new intern is to simply be a friend to the people you work with.Whether you report to a team, a supervisor or a different person every week- the best way to understand the company is to understand the people working there and helping them understand you.


Maybe not this friendly

While you may not get along with every person the same, there is a level of respect you gain for a person when you know more than just what they eat for lunch everyday. You’ll find that some are more open to side chatter throughout the day or ‘punny’ emails in their inbox. You’ll also find the guy with the headphones that still looks at you with the “can you be quiet” face even when he has music playing in his ears. Although you are in a temporary role as an intern, don’t discredit your personality in the work place. This is what creates that office culture.

A few simple ways to ‘be a friend’ inside the office:

  • Throw out the idea to do something out of the ordinary one day a week to learn what your colleagues are interested in (like a favorite t-shirt contest)
  • Ask for suggestions of places to go around the city- you may learn that your boss is actually part of a running club that tries a new pub every Tuesday (true story)
  • Tag along with someone to grab lunch (they’ll most likely pay since you’re poor)
  • Offer to play some tunes or ask what they are always jamming out to with their headphones plugged in (ask that one guy with the headphones always in)

I came from an office of all women, champagne at lunch, and Chris Brown Pandora station playing Monday-Friday to an almost silent office of middle-aged men with a fridge full of expired sauces and La Croix (sparkling water). While these experiences are extremely different, they are both enjoyable and memorable- because of the friends I’ve made of the day one colleagues.


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6 Responses to Be Their Friend

  1. horsttyler says:

    Wow Hannah, sounds like you had quite the transition from your old office to your current one. You’re right that your personality makes up the workplace culture so I believe that it’s important, even as interns, to showcase that personality on a regular basis. Don’t feel like just because you’re in temporary role that you can’t act a little outside your shell.

  2. pdxsx says:

    Good insight, Hannah. I never hurts to be kind and outgoing. Some of the best friends you will make in life are people you work with for only part of it.

  3. Ryan Delaney says:

    It is so important to try and fit with the people you work with. Even if it’s uncomfortable at first, it will pay dividends in the long run. Simply adjusting the way you work with people and being more open to a change in the environment works wonders. Nice job!


  4. sydneyandree says:

    First of all, great photo to compliment your post! Second, I love the fun ideas you suggested to make things a little more fun in the office. A t-shirt contest or some sort of dress up day is an easy way to get people to show their personality. Great post!

  5. Great post, Hannah! I especially liked your suggestion of the favorite t-shirt contest. I may have to steal that for my own office…

    It sounds like you had quite the transition into your current position but that’s what makes starting somewhere new so interesting. Sometimes you can learn more from someone different from yourself rather than just surrounding yourself with the same personalities. Way to mix it up!

  6. alliejhardy says:

    I love this. I want to join a running club that tries a new pub every Tuesday (but not the running part). Champagne at lunch every day sounds amazing–can I work there? I definitely agree with staying true to your personality even though you are in a temporary position. Great post!

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