The things you didn’t learn in school, but did in your internship… Next week I will finish my management internship at the headquarters of AccorHotels Benelux. Even though my internship only lasted about 4 months, I learned a lot of things from my team and the company…
- The working environment is very informal. My teachers talk to me using ‘Miss Hellinx’ while they just call me ‘Eef’ at my internship. But that is very logical, you work together 5 days out of 7 and you spend a lot of time together. So you better get to know each other!
- You don’t have to finish your assignments as fast as you can. Take some time, so you can make the best of it. When you leave your assignment for a couple of hours, you might get a new angle. Or you might see mistakes that you didn’t before.
- Making mistakes is okay. But you have to fix them yourself, that way you won’t make them again. Hopefully.
- It’s not where you work, it’s who you work with. Having a good time with your colleagues is very important. It makes the time fly by and you actually don’t dread going to work.
- Sometimes you just got to stand up a walk around. I had an office job so I sat 8 hours straight. This is, of course, not very healthy. So get up, walk around and talk to some people that don’t sit near you.
- Take action. I think it is necessary that you take responsibility and even initiative when it comes to your function. You have to propose things yourself and talk about your idea’s. That way you can show what you got and they don’t have to tell you what to do. Show them you can find things to do and see what things should be done.
I think it is very important to do an internship before you go into the big scary working world. If you are doing an internship at the moment or in a couple of months: be patient and accept that you make mistakes, we’re all human. But own up to the mistakes and fix them yourself. That’s the best way to learn.