How to optimize your internship experience The IICAP Internship Process 1 Finding the right internship 2 Turning the internship into a job 1 Finding the right internship What Career Are You Leaning On? Internships can translate to full-time positions It is important that your employer likes you, but more importantly … that YOU like the work 1 Finding the right internship What Career Are You Leaning On? Make sure to: • Know what environment best fits with you: – Chances are, the happier you are at work, the better the quality of the work you produce • Build realistic expectations: – Grunt work is inescapable regardless of the job! – However, make sure to set out what you expect to be doing and learning over the course of your internship 1 Finding the right internship Where Would You Like To Work? Finding the ideal company: • Research industries – Learn all about the industries that you would be interested in • Research companies – Learn about them through their webpages, research sites (i.e. Vault, Hoover’s Online, etc.) and University resources (counsellors and online databases) • Make contacts – Develop your network by attending information sessions, reaching out to companies of interest for more information 1 Finding the right internship How Do You Get The Internship? Once you’ve identified a company of interest: • Research the organization thoroughly – What is the company currently doing? Find out new trends, challenges, recent successes, and workplace history • Complete your application as clearly and professionally as possible – Your resume and cover letter must outline your skills, experience, education, volunteer work, accomplishments, and interests • Prepare for the interview – Practice mock interviews with your friends beforehand – On the day of your interview, dress professionally and bring a copy of your resume 1 Finding the right internship Acing The Interview After researching the company and, when possible, the people who are interviewing you … Practice your responses with a friend or an academic advisor 1 Finding the right internship Acing The Interview Be prepared for two kinds of interview questions: • Behavioral: – Set out to test your behavior in an employment context • Technical: – Purposed to assess whether you have the necessary subjectspecific knowledge for the job 1 Finding the right internship Behavioral Questions Sample of behavioral questions: • Tell me about how you worked effectively under pressure • Have you ever made a mistake? How did you handle it? • Give an example of a goal you reached and tell me how you achieved it. • Give an example of how you worked on team. • What do you do if you disagree with someone at work? • Share an example of how you were able to motivate employees or co-workers. • Have you handled a difficult situation? How? 1 Finding the right internship Interview Dos And Don’ts BE CONFIDENT Composure is key. An interview is a good measure to show how you handle pressure so you do not want to appear too nervous. DRESS AND ACT PROFESSIONALLY It is not what you say, but how you present yourself. Shake hands firmly, maintain eye contact, sit up and stay focused. SELL YOURSELF Speak confidently about your experiences and how they distinguish you from the other candidates. ARRIVE 15 MINUTES EARLY Late attendance is never excusable DO GET CLARIFICATION The better you understand the question, the better the answers you give. DO YOUR HOMEWORK Learn as much as you can about the company and the people that are interviewing you. ASK QUESTIONS Asking questions is the best way to show enthusiasm for the job. Show you did your homework and you are genuinely interested. FOLLOW UP Send a follow up email thanking the interviewers for their time and reaffirm your interest in the position. 1 Finding the right internship Interview Dos And Don’ts BE VAGUE INTERRUPT CHEW GUM Get the employer to be more specific and then respond. If you don't have time to listen, neither does the employer. or place your phone on the employer's desk. ACT OVERLY FAMILIAR even if the employer is acting in this way. SIMPLY ANSWER "YES" OR "NO“ Explain whenever possible. RAMBLE DON’T Long answers often make the speaker sound apologetic or indecisive. LIE BADMOUTH Answer questions as truthfully as possible. your present or former employers or companies. The IICAP Internship Process 1 Finding the right internship 2 Turning the internship into a job 2 Turning internship into job Fit in Be alert to the corporate culture • Get along with your boss and your coworkers – Your coworkers always have a say as to whether you get the full-time position! • Ask for feedback – Understanding how they perceive your work in their workplace can be very insightful for improvement 2 Turning internship into job Fit in Things to keep in mind • Adhere to the start and finish hours – It doesn’t look good to start late and leave earlier • Respect the dress code 2 Turning internship into job Set Personal Goals • Show initiative – Showing enthusiasm for your work is the best way to prove you belong there • Go above and beyond the bare minimum – When you exceed expectations, you gain your colleagues’ trust 2 Turning internship into job Your Image Matters Everything you do creates an impression on your employer and coworkers Write emails carefully Be on time Be respectful of others Demonstrate professional integrity Praise much more frequently than you criticize Include as many coworkers that would be relevant to your activities 2 Turning internship into job Ask Questions If you don’t know how to do something, ASK! Employers do not expect you to know everything the from the first day on the job. At the same time, this demonstrates eagerness to learn and motivation 2 Turning internship into job At the end of the internship Ask for a reference letter that recognizes the contribution you have made And don’t forget … Have fun!