Internship Etiquette: The first step in your career
What Is an Internship?
The position of a student or trainee who works in an organization, sometimes without pay, in order to gain work experience or satisfy requirements for a qualification.
Internship is chance to create a good impression by adhering to basic professional etiquette
After days or months of vigorous hunting for internships, projecting an impressive resume and going through the interview phases, you finally land yourself the ideal internship. That is just not enough for you to brace for what is ahead. Your internship is very similar to your professional job. The only difference is that it is the first stepping ladder. Nevertheless, the fact remains the same that it is a professional work environment where you have to be on your best behavior strictly maintaining the office protocol.
Why Are Internships Important?
Internships offer students a hands-on opportunity to work in their desired field. They learn how their course of study applies to the real world and build a valuable experience that makes them stronger candidates for jobs after graduation.
An internship can be an excellent way to “try out” a certain career. For instance, you may think you want a fast-paced job in advertising after college, but after an internship, you may find that it’s not for you; that’s valuable insight that will help you choose your career path.
In some colleges, internships also count towards course credit. This is dependent on your individual school’s requirements, but usually, a three-month long internship counts as a full course credit.
Keep reading for the basic tips to carry out professional internship etiquette.
Say goodbye to your phone
Better stay away from your phone during the office hours and refrain from using social media while working. It is strictly unprofessional behavior as it suggests your interest lies somewhere else. It may turn out to be a black star in your profile.
Maintain the dress-code
You are not going to a get-together with your friends for a relaxing day. Internship is not a matter of joke so you have to dress accordingly in a work appropriate clothes. Your dress-up is going to be the first impression you’re going to create as it says ‘First impression is the last impression’. So try to be taken seriously and show you’re taking the work likewise.
Always have a strong tone of voice when you interact with others and be very polite while you speak
Be punctual and prompt
Punctuality and promptness in work sends out a positive signal that is how seriously you’re taking your internship. It tells a great deal about yourself too that is your time management skills and your promising nature.
Greet everyone you meet
Greet everyone politely with a smile, give them a firm handshake making eye contact also do so while you speak. Always have a strong tone of voice when you interact with others and be very polite while you speak. It is greatly essential that you maintain workplace hierarchy so naturally you have to be cautious regarding you tone when you’re talking to your seniors and also subordinates. Never use swearwords during office hours maintain formal behavior. You will be highly scrutinized on this matter.
Show your eagerness and curiosity
Eagerness and curiosity will always be appreciated. It shows your intentness to learn after all internship is all about learning and grooming yourself. Internship carves you to finesse. So start asking questions from the very first day of work, even the minor detail will help you someday to become the better of yourself. If you have a basic knowledge about the work place from the first day you will not have to spend time asking for directions from the following day onwards. Try to get familiar with the office map- your co-workers’ cubicles, washrooms, canteen, etc. And make sure you take notes!
Be willing to work and volunteer to help
There may times when you’re done with your assigned work but show willingness to help out your fellow colleagues. Also volunteer to take up extra project so that you can display your potential in spheres of work.
Be careful with the email etiquette
Internship etiquette is not only limited to office working hours it goes way beyond that. It applies to while you are writing an email. So you have to maintain your status as a professional intern. You obviously have to be respectful towards the recipient while also promptly replying to the e-mail, you cannot make them wait for long. You are there as an intern for a very short period of time so there is also a time constraint for you to impress them with your sharp time maintenance. Also check your grammar, spelling and tone. Try to be straightforward, keeping the mail short and concise.
Brush up your networking and socializing skills
Internship is the best time to brush up your socialising skills and create networks which will come handy in the future. It also helps you out in projects and teaches you a lot during the process. Even if you don’t get the job afterwards, maintaining a cordial relationship will benefit you in the future for sure.
Be mindful of all the points mentioned but this will only guide to mix in the office culture and standout. After all your potential is your main weapon to nail your internship!