Today marks the end of 4 weeks to date. I have worked one month at NBC. Prior to this internship, I probably would have shared a rather disheartening perception of internships; I would have said that interns are given jobs that really don’t mean much and are “minute savers” for employees. Today, if you asked me about internships, I would describe how important the search process is to find an internship with opportunity and a company that invests in its interns. That is where you will find that your personal contributions can be of some greater significance than fetching coffee and organizing closets do.
As the Broadcast Operations Intern for the Sales and Marketing team, I have to work for my responsibilities, but once I am granted the opportunity to create a specific project, I work hard to do so and it does have an impact on the team’s results. On my first day, I was never told that my projects would be a replication of my efforts. On day 6, my supervisor came to my desk and handed me a stack of papers saying that because of my dedication and work ethic, I was to create and submit five POP’s for two of our clients. I had no idea what this meant and once I discovered the actual (as opposed to literal) definition for “Proof of Performance,” I had no idea how to create one let alone a POP that I’d be presenting for the team. I give a lot of my success during the creation of these POPs to what I’ve learned through Leadership.
My perceptions of work and the roles that we play in work have changed since I’ve begun my leadership major. First, I understand that, quite literally, you don’t get what you don’t ask for. More often than not, you will not receive solely based on your efforts. To get what you deserve you must ask for experiences, assignments, and advice. This takes confidence and gumption, but is worthwhile.
Second, success is truly based on your understanding of coworkers and your ability to acclimate to their desires, intentions, and expectations. While in a perfect working world, people should be able to put their personalities and social expectations aside, our results are based on social networking and interactions: how well we get along with our coworkers, managers, and how well our work aligns with our bosses’ preferences (at least when you are an intern). Knowing just how to understand people and environments and how to adjust our behaviors to create the greatest success is something that I have learned in Leadership. This is not to say that you must change yourself to be a different version of yourself in the working world, but to raise or lower certain traits, skills, or faults according to those around us. The capacity to do so can be monumental.
Particular to myself, I have applied these insights to my internship at NBC. I have paid close attention to the habits and differentiating qualities of each of the employees that I work closely with and capitalize on the things that make us similar. For instance, the Head of the Marketing team is incredibly prompt and would rather I email her before making it to her desk because she is busy and is easily overwhelmed. The Manager of Integrated Marketing is more accustomed to coming to my desk because she would rather her inbox not get overcrowded. Simultaneously, this manager is prompt in the sense that she doesn’t give me a deadline, but if I say I’ll have a project to her by a certain time, she wants it by the time. This has impacted the ways in which I confront situations where I am assigned tasks by both of them within the same 5-10 minutes, for example, and as helped tremendously. I will continue applying my learned leadership skills to my efforts as an intern.