3 THINGS YOU SHOULD DO BEFORE YOUR INTERNSHIP COMES TO AN END
An internship is a great experience. It is great because it gives you the opportunity to blend theory with practice. Aside, it exposes you to the dynamics of the corporate world and provides you with a platform to hone your skills, develop new ones and reshape your perspectives about work and life in general.
So as an intern, you should constantly be thinking about how to create a lasting impact, gain referrals and get retained if necessary before your period of internship comes to an end.
Below are 3 things you should do before our internship comes to an end:
1. Identify a pertinent gap in the organization and propose a solution.
There is no perfect organization. All organizations have problems. Common problems include poor management of resources, weak customer service mechanisms, lack of occupational health and safety measures, communication and security issues just to name a few.
So your role is to identify that pertinent gap and propose a sustainable solution to the problem. To effectively draw the attention of hierarchy, you need to be scientific in your approach rather than base your arguments on assumptions. So it's important you conduct a survey and submit the findings with the proposals to hierarchy on how you think the problem can be resolved.
Therefore, you can use this medium to create a vacancy for yourself since you have a mastery of the solution plan. So you should not be afraid to communicate your interest in working for the organization to assist them in solving the problem you raised. Guess what? You have created a powerful impression and hierarchy no longer see's you as an intern but as a resource person.
2. Network as much as possible with key staff.
Most interns are very shy and reserved. They are so because of organizational rules and regulations, or probably because of certain strict measures formulated by their immediate supervisors to enable them to be proactive. Although rules are good, they however, most at times tend to stifle creativity and innovation in interns. Notwithstanding, as an intern, you need to be submissive, strong and proactive if you wish to achieve more. Being proactive and open will enable you to establish new networks and gain endorsements/referrals at the end of your internship.
It is common to see interns falling apart with their supervisors before the end of their internship for one reason or the other. It later becomes a blockade to them when they are seeking for opportunities because they can't go back to their supervisors for issues such as recommendation letters or advisory services.
So while on internship, it is important to be friendly and open. Visit other departments when you have nothing doing in your department and request to assist with tasks rather than idling or engaging in unproductive discussions. This, of course, gives the impression that you are a hardworking, proactive and dynamic person. By so doing, you create new relationships and contacts which you can always reach out to when a need arises.
3. Share your experiences with the organization in a comprehensive report before leaving.
Most organizations if not all, compel their interns to produce a comprehensive report at the end of their internship. The purpose of doing so is to enable them to have information on the effectiveness and lapses in their programs so that they can improve on them.
It is however sad to remark that many interns fail to provide their host organizations with such reports, reasons being that internship reports are never read.
To create a lasting impact, you need to be different by adhering to the organization’s policies by handing in your internship report. So you need to be objective when documenting the various activities you were engaged in. Doing so proves that you are a problem solver who is prepared to tackle real-life problems if given an opportunity. Note that the end reader may be so impressed with your report that he/she may end up recommending you for vacancies in and out of the organization.
To sum it up, you have the power to make your internship either a rewarding experience or a sad memory. Hence, developing a proactive spirit and thinking out of the box will bring out the best in you.
About the author
Obia Mboni Bryan is a Professional in human resource management and business administration with several years of experience. He holds a Masters Degree in Strategic Human Resource Management and a Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) in Educational Psychology. Bryan is certified in Digital Marketing by Google and eMarketing Institute. He is also certified in Project Management and Six Sigma by the Board of Trustees of the Management and Strategy Institute. He is currently working as a Managing Partner and HR consultant at Camer Human Capital (CHC) Ltd.