The Good Intern
New Year, New Goals
The First Day
Posted by Michelle Pence - - 0 comments

Let me share with you one of the most important lessons I have learned through my experience interning- get in good with your coworkers.

I'm not just talking about the other interns, I'm talking about the boss' secretary, the IT guy- basically everyone in the office who will talk to you (without being creepy).

Don't go over-the-top
Nobody likes a suck-up.  Period.

Make an effort to get to know everyone and their individual personalities
Once you get a feel for what each person is like, you can decide who to joke around with, who to ask about their kids, etc.  Simply observing is one of the best communication moves you can make.

Ask questions
People love to talk about themselves, so even just asking questions and listening to their responses can put you in their favor.  Use this technique when you are at a loss for something to talk about with someone, especially during the first few weeks of your internship.

Be sincere and professional
These people have most likely been around longer than you and are closer with your boss, so don't cross any lines that might jeopardize your internship.  This means no telling dirty jokes or describing in vivid detail your most recent night at the bar.

Make getting to know your coworkers a part of your job description
If you consider getting to know your coworkers a vital part of your job, you will feel pressure to actually follow through.  A lot of times, by keeping in touch with the people you meet, you could get helpful career advice or letters of recommendations which will help you out in the long-run.


Sounds simple enough, right?  Let me tell you a story.  

At one of my internships, I ended up having problems with one of the new hires who, coincidentally, was best friends with my boss.  Could there be a worse scenario?

I'm a pretty easy-going person and I don't like to cause trouble so needless to say, I was majorly distressed by this.  I didn't want to be visibly upset and put my good-standing with my boss at risk, but I was always stressed by this person and I worried it was going to hurt my job-performance.

I ended up speaking with the office manager whom I felt I could trust (and later became a close friend), and she kept an eye out for me from then on, even calling out certain behaviors exhibited by my coworker which weren't appropriate without putting me in the spotlight. 

Although I was scared I would look like a drama-queen, I'm glad I told someone in private.

If you are experiencing problems in your internship, go to someone; whether it be your internship supervisor or someone in the office who you can trust.  Internships are a learning experience, and it's definitely not worth being miserable the whole time.

If the problem is minor, try dealing with it yourself by focusing on other things, or by casually avoiding run-ins with the person.  Sure, lots of people have annoying hang-ups that will get under you skin from time-to-time, but that just comes with the territory of working in an office.

Just remember, that the relationships you form during an internship can last much longer than the duration of your time there, and that every positive relationship you form may be an asset to yourself and your future.

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