In this age of interns, young people are expected to have internships on their CV when applying for jobs. It can give you the experience that everyone needs to stand out in a difficult job market. It’s not always easy but can be very rewarding.
So here is a post written by one of our previous interns – top 7 tips for being a stand out intern at Top Left Design, that can be applied anywhere.
A positive mental attitude is a powerful thing, in or out of the office. You can be asked to do almost anything when interning. Some of what you are asked to do may be unexpected but as long as you keep a positive mental attitude you can take on anything! Nobody wants a negative intern scowling and saying they can’t do what is asked of them. Not only that, but a positive mental attitude will help you get the tasks done that you didn’t think were possible previously.
2. Don’t be afraid to ask
Nobody knows everything. I’ve been surprised how much the team at Top Left Design all ask each other for help. This has made me feel more at ease about asking questions and it really is better to ask a question than to waste your time doing something the wrong way, so don’t be shy!
3. Attention to detail
The more time I’ve spent here I’ve noticed a great attention to detail which drives the staff of TLD. A stand out intern needs to pay attention to the small things which make a job look professional.
4. Don’t sweat the small stuff
Wherever you’re interning you are going to be given some jobs that are less exciting. Don’t deem these jobs as ‘beneath you’ or ‘not part of your job description’, firstly because this is a terrible attitude to have! And secondly because as an intern you should be willing to try and help with whatever you can and it’s all great experience. To make jobs like this seem more interesting, try making a game out of it by timing yourself to see how fast you can complete them!
In the real world of work you never just have one thing on your plate, and at TLD this can be true even of interns. When there’s a lot of things going on you’ve got to get the time critical things done. Know what you can afford to spend time on and know what needs to be done right away. Not sure? Ask!
Being organised can relieve a lot of stress in the life of an intern. Something as simple as writing down tasks when you are given them can cut out a lot of questions that you later feel silly asking.
When you’re working on a task that you’re not familiar with there’s bound to be questions or problems that arise. Instead of asking the questions as they come up, jot them down and try and work around the problems. By the time you have finished you may have found the answer to your own question, and if not, you can still ask!
7. Don’t give up!
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Things may seem difficult when you start interning but persevere and things that initially seemed difficult will become easy after a while.