5 Things I Learnt From My Summer Internship – Vaishnavi Deshpande, IIM Sirmaur
Summer Internships are subject to market risks, please read the article carefully before investing.
Jokes apart, summer internships are the most important phase of your MBA. They really help you put things into perspective. They also help you gauge where you stand in comparison to your counterparts from other b-schools.
1. Financial support
For someone who is experienced and pursuing MBA on a loan, it is necessary to think how you will support yourself financially during your two months summer internship. My parents provided me with the initial support, however, I was heavily counting on my first-month stipend to cover the subsequent month’s expenses. This became a disaster when there was a technical delay in the stipend being credited by the company, which put me in a tough spot. Be prepared.
2. Your major may not be your core interest
Another thing I observed during my internship was that no matter how interested I was in Finance, I was more inclined towards IT and HR roles. While working with other interns who were assigned HR projects, I realised that I had more inputs and ideas for those tasks than for my own. This was an eye-opener for me. It not only pushed me to explore alternative subjects of interest but also motivated me to retouch upon the forgotten concepts.
3. Document everything
The company I interned in, provided interns with a Daily Diary, to note down the tasks performed by us on a daily basis. As a result, I started noting down things such as the names of the people I interacted with that day, the information of the products and services, the general information gathered through interaction with full-time employees regarding how the company is doing, and so on. These were really helpful as I gained more insight into the way the company functions, its core values and key leaders.
4. Skill development
Due to my work experience in an IT company, where I was subject to more than 10 hours of work daily, I constantly felt that I was being under-worked during my internship. As a result, I started investing my free evenings in self-study. I started taking courses through free online learning portals and it helped me stay focused. Some of my batch mates invested this time in attaining their fitness goals. This is the only time you get to prepare yourself for your placements and differentiate your profile from those of your batch mates. Hence, skill development goes a long way with regard to your placements.
5. Explore the city
A new city always presents you with abundant opportunities to explore. I was located in Delhi for my internship, and that allowed me to explore not just food, fashion and the lifestyle of Delhi, but also its historical architecture and scenic offerings. You can also plan weekend getaways to nearby attractions. It would only add to your entire internship experience, at the same time, help you unwind.