Friday, 13 April 2012
The Power of Placement – Week 4/6 as Marketing Intern
I can’t believe how time is flying here at FUSE. Over the past few weeks I have really thought about what an internship is, and how it can affect a student. I know some peers went to placements thinking they were getting a job, some to graduate and move onto other studies, and many like me just didn’t know exactly what to expect. My belief is you should never go into a situation like placement and expect to get a job, there may not be an opening, maybe you don’t fit with the team, or maybe it’s perfect and you get it, but I think that if your entire focus is securing a job with the company you will over look everything else you can get from a placement.
These are my key takeaways from my internship at FUSE Marketing Group.
Networking – It is a given that being an intern allows you to meet a multitude of industry professionals, but taking advantage of this oppourtunity is how you will get the most out of your placement. The end goal is NOT to get a job but to make connections. Connect with your team on Linked In, shadow internal meetings and reviews, go out to lunch with the individuals you work with every day, connect with them on a personal and professional level. Don’t only make them your friends, but show them what you can do in the office as well.
Learn from these professionals, wow them, and search for that ‘golden reference’.
Studying – The office atmosphere has many differences from the classroom, but the main similarities I noticed was how close everyone becomes and how many different personalities comprise one team, let alone the entire office/company. Studying how all of these individuals interact with each other as well as how they adapt to the each unique client is a lesson in itself.
Understand the office dynamic as well as the many different techniques to adapt to different clients and you will go far in this business.
Experience – The one shout out I must give to my program at St. Lawrence College (Advertising: Integrated Marketing Communications) is our experience with local clients and the ability to run through the entire campaign process from the RFP and Pitch all the way through to Execution and Analytics has helped prepare us for agency life. In the office I suggest help with EVERYTHING, if there is anything on a project you are even remotely interested in, ask how you can help. Offer your time to everyone on your team, and to other teams, try to get your hand into as many projects as possible (without over extending yourself, because you want all of your work to be your best work) and expand your experience beyond sitting at a desk waiting for a project to fall in your lap.
My highlight of placement so far would have to be my work on the FUZZ Blog, not because it is astounding and groundbreaking, but because they trusted my work enough to have it associated with their brand. Seeing my blog post on the main website, shared on their Facebook and Twitter was the pat on the back I didn’t realize I needed.
My Advice to anyone entering into placement (Outside the obvious – show up early and be professional)
Everyday of placement is an in office interview. Never expect a job from an internship but earn an amazing reference. Every meeting is a first impression, every morning is a chance to show how dedicated you are to the industry and brand, and every interaction is a window of oppourtunity to create a long standing professional relationship to help you in the job search of the future.