Hey Guys !! I am Surabhi Gupta! One of the lucky ones who completed her Summer Internship in the year 2020 – Digitally and will be pursuing almost 50% of my MBA online.
My enriching Internship has been with Procter and Gamble ( P&G ) – Product Supply ( Digitization )
I am sharing my journey so far with you – all the ups and downs not with expectations for acknowledgment, but just to relieve some of you from the thought that going ONLINE is “ BAD”.
Let me take you through the preparation first!
I still remember the day when I entered the NITIE Campus Gate. All the faces were brimming with enthusiasm to present themselves to their peers and seniors and make a mark for the years to come.
At NITIE you find your Journey usually has three phases :
B) The Summer Internship
Funny it may sound, but MBA is just about these three phases and your confidence in each phase
A) My Pre Placement Phase
Class Schedule in NITIE is not very hectic ,so I could get ample amount of time to “ Network “. By network I don’t mean only LinkedIn. There’s everything from Adcom Induction Process, SIP Study Group formation by the placement team, GD-PI preparations, interactions with allotted buddies, interaction with seniors who just interned in a specific domain, case-study competitions, knowledge sessions by seniors who willingly come forward to take classes on their subject expertise and finally Pre Placement talks by Industry Experts.
I literally did everything !! And left No stone unturned. I had already taken a break year to prepare and now I wanted only the best placement from the campus. Apart from making these connections within my batch and with Seniors and experts, I was also reading the newspaper ( almost daily through any one medium – video, print, audio, app or other media )
For two months you don’t sleep and work dextrously day and night. You attend classes in the day and work for SIP in the evening and even at night. You have no time for outings and everyone is working their hardest just for one thing – “The Race to a GOOD SIP”. No Second thoughts, your SIP can do wonders for your career!
Finally comes the placement season! A time when you get to feel all the possible emotions your can search in any dictionary !
I remember we had exams planned in last week of August and soon after that we were bombarded with pre-placement talks – 3 to 4 per day of 2 hours each ( they are mandatory to attend if you are mapped or placecomm will make your life hell ) along with the recruitment process of companies ( 5-6 forms per day with each form taking 3-4 hours to fill ). And all this has to be done in set deadlines. You miss one talk or one form deadline and you close the gate for that opportunity forever ever in your life !!
I seriously want to advise you guys here that your CV and HR answers should be well prepared on your tips and your Preparation for GD and PI should be rock solid ( with Mock Interviews 7 to 8 at least ) before this phase of placement talks start, or I tell you your mind will explode!
The SHORTLIST – Ok! I am not going into the dark discussion of this topic. But I will take you through what you can do. The only thing you can do is ; just be your best !! This is what I did.
The criteria with which companies shortlist is just a black box and nobody can ever decode it. So better you keep your preferences and choices in your heart only and not let it come to your head or you will be KILLED!
I did not get shortlist for many good companies until 2/3 days. HUL, Godrej, Amazon, Delloite, PWC were a few of them. My heart sank each time I saw my name missing in another list. At this time I tell you, it's your good seniors with whom you have build trust till now, who will come to your rescue. I can never be thankful enough for a few seniors who were there for me every moment in this process and never left my hand. They inspired enough courage in me that I managed not lose my self-confidence!
Finally, before Placement I had a few good shortlists with me, around 10 in number both from consulting and FMCG . P&G was the first company I appeared for. It took me 6 hours to appear before the HR. And in that time you are bombarded with more selection lists and rejection lists. Your mind goes numb waiting for that long. All that you had prepared ,feels like it has gone blank! There is just a bleak light which helps you keep yourself upright. When I had my first interview, magic happened, then I had the second round and then the third. I did not feel for once that it was a formal interview. It was as if someone very keen to know me was sitting in front of me and I was just blabbering about who I was, what I felt, what I had gone through, how I think, why I think so and so on.. It was like things were just clicking and before I could realize what was happening, I was Out! Out of the Process (OOP – as lingo says !), I was selected, in the first company I sat for ! That feeling of clearing the process was incomparable. I came out and called my parents. Their happiness was flowing through their eyes and I could hear that in their voice.
Suddenly your whirling world comes to rest and you feel like breathing FINALLY!
Then you see your friends, some are still in the process some are out. But anyhow we all come out of it! That is the ultimate reality
B) During Summer Internship –
Nobody had even imagined the Covid Situation would happen and we would be sitting in our beds ( very few on the table ) and doing the most crucial project of our MBA tenure. The Summer Internship
Here again, I was lucky. P&G HR had organized a few really helpful sessions that specially trained us to perform in this NEW NORMAL. Two things I want to share you from there are:
1. “ ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS “. I genuinely believe this the crux of performing in any – any project given to you.
2. “ Connect Daily “ – A digital internship is a place where hundreds of your issues can be resolved if you connect daily with your mentor or guide or buddy. Keeping the stakeholders on the same page is My BIGGEST learning and advice from my internship.
My guide and mentor was a single person who took me through the entire period like a close friend and buddy. He always guided me on what best I could do, who to approach and how I could do things particular to P&G’s culture. I’ll always remember one line he said “ I have given you a blank canvas and colors – it's up to you what you create and how relevant it is “ and he seriously meant it. I was given all the ownership for my project and not even a single day did I feel that I was not a P&G employee. I felt one of them.
PPO is a result I agree we all look forward to, even me! But the satisfaction you get after doing a job given to you to your best: it is incomparable.
POST Summer Internship –
This area is still new to me to explore but what I learned from my seniors is – either you wait for PPO or you go back into the process with 4 times more rigor this time than the last time
I genuinely want to thank you if you are reading this. Because that implies my story could give you some perspective about the Summer Season Process and possibly I could calm some of your anxieties.
Best of Luck !