Internships – 5 Steps To Get Your Foot In The Door
In today’s professional working world, getting into your industry is easier said than done. You may have the perfect resume, experience, and personality to nail an interview; however, landing the interview may be even more difficult than the interview itself. While searching for your first full time job can be a long, stressful, and sometimes discouraging process, considering an internship may be the answer.If you think taking an internship is a waste of time when you’re searching for a full-time job -many are unpaid, you’re over-qualified, or it’s temporary and you’re looking for a permanent job-, think again. There are so many benefits and skills you can gain from one, here’s just a few:
- Gain Experience. Whatever industry you’re going into, an internship in that industry will help you stand out when looking for a job. Potential employers can see that you already have some experience in the industry, and it also allows you perform and master tasks that you would be doing at an entry-level position in your field.
- Opportunity to Network. Interning will open opportunities to meet and connect with many different professionals. You will meet people not only in your department, but throughout the company, and potentially meet other people outside of your company if working with clients. By connecting with these people, you never know what could happen in your future professional career. As the saying goes, “It’s not about what you know, it’s who you know”.
- Learn your strengths and weaknesses. Throughout an internship, it’s likely that you’ll be given several different tasks that will test you in different skill set areas. This will allow you to see what skills are your strong-points, and can highlight to potential employers in interviews, and those you need to work on developing.
- Make mistakes – they are expected. Let’s face it – no one is perfect. But the beauty of an internship is that it’s all about a learning curve, and part of learning is making mistakes. You’re not expected to know everything and an internship provides a safe environment to learn, both from your mistakes and those of others.
- Take time to question yourself – Is this right for you? Internships provide the opportunity to ‘trial’ a career in a given field. Take time and reflect on the experience – it’s only temporary, so really ask yourself if this is the industry you want to go into, and if you can see yourself doing this full-time, in a permanent position. An internship is a great way to determine if what you’re looking for is the job for you.