How to make the most of your Internship


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  • How to make the most of your Internship

    1. 1. How to Make the Most of YourInternship:Meeting your future career goals10 May 2013Rosie
    2. 2. Overview• Step 1: The Question to Ask Before You Start?• Step 2: Know Where You’re Heading• Step 3: Plans, Assumptions and Mentors• Step 4: Selling your internship• Summary• Questions
    4. 4. OVER TO YOUWho?A.Knows exactly: what role you want to do?B.Undecided: between 2 or more options?C.Has an inkling: but the role is not clear yet?D.Is at 1stbase: Feels stuck/not thought about it
    5. 5. The more you feel sure….1. Closing any specific gaps– ‘Technical’ skills & knowledge– ‘Soft’ skills1. Taking responsibility– Define and deliver a project1. Collect insights of colleagues– Criteria for interviews?– Who is hiring?– Good/bad places to work?1. Growing helpful contacts
    6. 6. The more you are unsure…1. Role insights and new experiences– Range of project experiences– Conversations– Contacts {beyond the organisation}1. Learning about options & paths– What is the range of options?– How have people progressed?1. Building strong generic skills– Management, communication….1. Taking responsibility– Define and deliver a project
    8. 8. Fast forward to the end of your internship…
    9. 9. OVER TO YOUIn a CV, covering letter or application form,what will employers be looking for from you soyou make it onto their short list???
    10. 10. EVIDENCE thatyou meet thepersonspecification
    11. 11. A person specification
    12. 12. How? Some sage advice….
    13. 13. Creating evidence that you meet theperson specification….• Be proactive: Find out how to find out?• Begin with the end in mind: Identify your gaps• Put first things first: Prioritise key gaps• Think win/win: Time and skills for experiences• Seek first to understand: Options, pros and cons• Synergies: Learn, do, grow, network, all at once• Sharpen the saw: Hone and develop skills
    14. 14. Where to start?The following forms a good place to start from:•Knowing key skills and experiences required in your field•Honest self-assessment of skills and gaps•Prioritise targets for skills, experiences, knowledge•What you can offer today to get opportunities•Opportunities for synergies•Additional ways to build knowledge and skills (courses,books, professional bodies, linkedin groups etc)
    16. 16. Some opinions on ‘plans’…..But….
    17. 17. So…
    18. 18. Shared “Plan” (you + mentor + perhaps key stakeholders?)•Objectives•Actions / Responsibilities•Approximate timeline•Deliverables•Contact times•Opportunities for learning a/wider exposure etc (as needed)•Training and development•Time for reflection and feedbackSuggestion…..
    19. 19. OVER TO YOUWith the best will in the world things may not always go to plan.Hopefully it won’t happen, but if you did find yourself in thisposition, what could you do to improve things?•Not enough to do•On your own a lot•Feeling like you aren’t being given the opportunity to make a‘significant contribution’Each table elect an idea collectorand a spokesperson5 mins + 5 mins feedback
    21. 21. Communication: Selling your internship at interviewCompetency, skills-based, behavioural, situational or structuredinterview questionsInterviewer seeks examples of past behaviour to demonstrate youhave the competencies to succeed in the job.•Describe a situation when you ......•Give an example of a time when you .....Key point: The night before is way too late to start prepping
    22. 22. • Context – the situation, the task you were faced with:̶ When, Where, Why, With whom?• Action – What YOU did̶ Decisions, actions, challenges overcome, skills applied• Result– what results did you achieve̶ Quantifiable, substantiated benefitsThe CAR Approach
    23. 23. 10 most popular graduate interview Qs1. Why do you want this job?2. Have you got any questions?3. Describe a situation when you led a team?4. Describe a situation where you worked in a team?5. What do you want to be doing in five years time?6. What are your weaknesses7. Who else do you have interviews with?8. Why did you make your university choices?9. What are your strengths?10. What has been your greatest achievement?Source: University of Kent(
    24. 24. A Good CAR AnswerDescribe a situation when you led a teamContext: During my NT internship, I asked for responsibility and agreed to overseethe summer preparations of the grounds at Haddon Hall, which meant managing ateam of 12 volunteers.Action: My role involved understanding the requirements, planning thecontributions of the volunteers, assigning duties, ensuring tasks were completedand supporting the team so that they could do their jobs. I motivated the teammembers by allocating more challenging work. I also worked around personalcommitments of team members, so that project was still delivered on time and tobudget.Result: The two aims were realised: Volunteers roundly enjoyed the work – Allvolunteers attended throughout the programme of activities, over 4 weeks. Thehall was deemed in an “excellent” state for the summer calendar.
    25. 25. OVER TO YOUWorking together, all of you come up with a CAR answer based onan internship experience so far for the following interviewquestions:4. Tell me a situation when you worked in a team9.Describe a situation where you used problem solving skills(5 mins + 5 mins feedback)Each table elect an idea collector and aspokesperson (different to last time)
    26. 26. Selling Your NT Internship in Application Forms and CVs…APPLICATION FORMSCVs
    27. 27. Content: gather your evidence as you go….• Keep a diary/ journal/ list of the tasks you’veundertaken throughout the internship• Identify skills/ knowledge / attributes you’veused / demonstrated• Use CAR technique (Context, Action, Result)• Use DYNAMIC/ ACTIVE vocabulary thatreflects job descriptions and requirementsOrganised, Managed, Liaised, Negotiated, Coordinated,Interviewed, Led, Identified, Communicated, Persuaded,Established, Participated, Developed, Researched,Demonstrated, Monitored, Planned, Arranged, etc...
    28. 28. Use this list to evidence ‘essential’ &‘desirable’ criteria•Use person spec headings as your headings …•Tailor each application to each job…•(Introduction)•Education & Training•Experience•Knowledge•Skills & Abilities•Personal attributes•(Concluding paragraph)
    29. 29. OVER TO YOUEach table elect an idea collector and a spokesperson (different tothe previous times)5 mins + 5 mins feedbackBearing in mind the habits of successful job seekers, list yourgroup’s top four ways that your NT internship can help your behappy and successful in your future job hunt.
    30. 30. SUMMARY
    31. 31. In summary: Getting the MostOut of Your Internship: Top 4 tips1.Understand where you are on the spectrumbetween “Clarity” and “Cloudiness” …. & tailor yourapproach accordingly2.Work effectively to gather evidence of youremployability (7 Habits….)3.Agree key parameters of your internship with yourmentor.4.Think CAR! To sell the value of your experience
    32. 32. Thank you forlistening…Any questions?