For those regular readers who know what I’ve been doing this Summer then this post will make a lot more sense, for those of you just stumbling across this post you might want to read this life update and this week 2 check in.
This summer I decided to do something bigger than just my hometown retail job, I decided to go for an internship in my field. I’ve just started my second year of my marketing degree at Birmingham City University, I’m passionate about entertainment marketing and this summer I was lucky enough to work for a digital marketing agency who are top in their field and specialize in film and digital media. I was fortunate enough to work on some of this summers biggest film titles and I gained some amazing experiences. I met some awesome people and faced some really valuable learning hurdles.
I wanted to write a post summing up what I’ve learnt over the last 4 months, because I think there’s some of you reading that are also studying marketing or have never been on an internship before. However I’m also writing this for me so I’ve got something I can read back on in years to come and remind myself of what I’ve learnt.
The company I worked for was small in size but huge in impact and as a film fan I found myself often star struck by some of the work that was going on around me. I learnt very quickly that the best way to remain productive and to stop yourself getting distracted is to take everything in with moderation, to stay passionate about the industry you’re in but to remember that you have a job to do and you need to make sure you’re being objective. Yes it may be your dream brand or something you find particularly interesting but it’s important to be able to take a step back from that. Professionalism is key.
-just a couple of my snaps from this summer-
The only way you’ll get answers is to ask all the questions, I asked countless questions everyday, to anyone who would answer them. Not always about my job but about theirs, any information you learn is good, might come in handy to be able to draw on that experience later. To refer to a popular clique, there are no such thing as stupid questions. One of the stand out characteristics of the company I worked for is that they recognized I wanted to learn so everybody was so open in answering my questions, I was never made to feel stupid for asking.
Like I mentioned before the company was relatively small, meaning I’d be working with senior PR and Client managers on a daily basis, of course approaching such a senior member of staff is daunting but sometimes you just need to take a deep breath, remind yourself they’re just people and go for it. My manager was off on holiday and it left our line of communication between us and the PR department a little cold for a couple days, until I decided to just go and find her desk, check in and see what I could do to help in my managers absence. I found actually our PR manager was really thankful for the help and it showed a bit of initiative.
Which brings me nicely on to my next point. You can get yourself as involved as you want to be, if there’s a certain project or meeting that you think you could be an asset to or just something interesting or new you’d like to be involved in. Ask. It’s that simple, if you want to learn more about the other departments within the company ask if you can spare a few hours to go and work within that team. I made sure I’d worked with all the departments in the building before I left. Not only did it teach me a lot about the other teams within the building but I learnt a lot about how that department works with my own. I wish I’d have done that much sooner, once I had I felt like I’d gained a much better relationship with the other people in the building but also I felt like I understood the company better as a whole. I think immersing yourself in the company is so important for understanding how it works, not just on the everyday stuff but looking at it as a business aswell I think gives you a really valuable perspective.
Internships are not the place for comfort zones. You need to push yourself. That’s the only way to make sure you get as much out of it as possible. Intern