How to Crush an Internship

Morgan Shaffer works at her laptop in the 8THIRTYFOUR office during her internship

So you’ve landed your dream internship, now what? Now is the time to crush it!

It can feel intimidating to walk in on your first day and feel like you can get right after your work. When I first came to 8THIRTYFOUR, I didn’t know what to expect; this has been my first experience in an agency, but I threw myself into the culture and tapped into my skills.

Your internship will be the first step in excelling in a future career, and will prepare you to kick-ass in the professional world.

Check out my tips for crushing your internship:

Listen, then ask

Often, I start to ask questions in my head before I hear the end of a statement, and sometimes that means I tune out of the conversation in order to form the question. But, that means I might miss out on vital information that my boss is sharing.

Turn off the questions until you have heard your boss out.

What I have found helps is to bring my laptop, or a pen and notepad, with me when meeting with my co-workers or boss so that I can jot down my thoughts without letting myself get distracted from the discussion. I cross off thoughts or questions as we go if they have been answered, and then I begin asking for clarification.

Pitch in

Hold the door, bring in snacks, offer to take notes or make the next pot of coffee. Kindness is timeless and your actions are memorable.

Speak up

Your ideas are just as valuable as the person sitting next to you. Why would you have been hired if the agency didn’t think so? Share your input because you never know, that idea could land you a spot on another account.

I know that I handle logistics of events well, and I shared that early on. Later that same month, we designed a huge event in two short weeks and I was able to take a large part in coordination. Identify your strengths and don’t be afraid to share what they are!

Manage your time

We use an awesome program that shows all of my to-dos for the day on my computer screen, however I still like to write mine on paper because seriously, what beats the satisfaction of crossing an item off a list?

Utilize to-do lists and break them down by project and timeframe. This will help you stay on track and get everything done before you leave the office.

If you are unable to finish a task, be sure to reach out and share if you are struggling or what your plan of attack is to conquer it in the following days. Remember, your boss may not always know when you are struggling, but if you share, you will allow for a learning opportunity.

Mind your manners

Say thank you. Always. No matter what. Constructive criticism? Thank you. A compliment? Thank you. Did someone teach you a new lesson or strategy? Thank you.

Take pride in your work, when someone thanks you for your work on something say “you’re welcome” instead of “no problem”. See the difference? When you say “no problem” you’re brushing off the work that you have done; take credit for what you did and accept the gratitude from the client or coworkers.

AND, always remember to say “please”.

Wake up and CRUSH IT

We have a saying in our office: “crush it.” When you walk in the door at the beginning of the day, your attitude needs to be positive and your mindset needs to tell you to “crush it.” No matter how small the task or how daunting the day may seem, go in with a crush it approach.

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